What to Expect
Someone will call you to give you a time for your first appointment at the Lymphoma Clinic. Learn more about preparing for your first appointment in the
Guide to Princess Margaret.
What to Bring
CD or DVD of your imaging studies.
Your referring doctor may give you a CD or DVD of imaging studies you may have had done such as
ultrasounds. If so, it is very important to bring this CD or DVD with you.
All medications you are currently taking in their original packaging.
This includes prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, vitamin or mineral supplements and herbal remedies.
See also: My First Appointment at UHN »
Medications that you need to take.
Appointments can take several hours. Bring with you any medications you normally take during the day.
Record of any changes.
Make notes about any changes in your condition that you’ve notice since your last visit, and bring these notes to show your doctor. Also bring any medical equipment you use, such as your colostomy bag, if you have one.
A trusted friend or family member.
A friend or family member can give you emotional support and can help you make good choices. They can also help you gather information, take notes and ask questions.
Questions to ask.
Bring a list of questions to your appointment to help you remember everything you want to ask.
See also: Treatment Decision-Making and Questions to Ask »
Learn more about what to bring to your appointment »
When You Arrive
The first person you meet at the Lymphoma Clinic is the
Patient Flow Coordinator. To sign in with the Patient Flow Coordinator you will need your health card (OHIP card). If you do not have an OHIP card, please bring another form of government-issued photo ID (such as a driver's license, passport, or other provincial health card).
Next, a volunteer will help you fill out the
DART self-assessment. DART stands for Distress Assessment and Response Tool. DART asks about your experiences with common physical symptoms, practical concerns and emotional concerns. Your health care team uses your answers to track how you are doing and to make sure your most important concerns are looked after.
Learn more about DART »
Measuring Health Equity Questionnaire
You will be given a form to fill out. This form contains questions about your background. We collect this information to find out who we serve and what unique needs you may have.
The form is voluntary and you can choose ‘prefer not to answer’ to any or all questions. However, the information you chose to give us will help us improve the quality of care for you and others.
How Long Will Your Appointment Be?
First appointments take longer than follow-up appointments.
- Your first appointment can take 3 hours or more.
- If you are a new patient referred for a
stem cell transplant consultation, your first appointment can take up to 5 hours. It may take longer if you require a procedure.
For your follow-up visits, you will usually have to have blood work done before you see the doctor. It is best to arrive 1 hour before your appointment so that you can have the blood work done before you check in at the Lymphoma Clinic. Find
where to go for blood work »
We do our best to stay on time. Unfortunately, your appointment may be delayed by unforeseen circumstances. We recommend that you come prepared for delays. For example, make sure your arrangement for things like babysitting, elder care and parking can accommodate a longer than usual appointment.
Where to Go for Blood Work
You can have blood work done at several locations at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. Where you go depends on whether there is already access to your veins, and what type of access it is.
If you do not have a line, go to the
Blood Collection Lab on the 3rd floor to have your blood work done. You do not have a line if your blood sample is taken using a needle through your skin.
If you have a line, go to the
Ambulance Waiting Area on the
main floor behind the main elevators. You have a line if your blood sample is taken from a vein access device. The most common types of vein access devices are:
- Central venous catheter (CVC), which is a catheter tube that exits from your chest.
- Peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC), which is a catheter tube that exits from your arm.
- Port-a-cath (Port), which is implanted under your skin on your chest.
Before You Leave
At the end of your first appointment, the nurse or doctor will give you a contact list for your health care team. If you don’t get a contact list, feel free to ask for it.
After every appointment, the nurse will tell you about your next visit. Be sure you understand what is going to happen next. For example, know the time and place of your next visit or if someone will call you with this information.
If you are unsure about what your next steps are, don’t be afraid to ask a member of your team. We are there to help you.
Other resources that you may find helpful:
The Cancer Journey Resources include a personal guidebook and planner. These resources are available to all new patients at the Princess Margaret. You can pick up a free copy from your clinic or at the Princess Margaret Patient & Family Library. The Cancer Journey Guide Book and Planner are also available online or on the Princess Margaret Journey App.
Learn more about the Cancer Journey Resources »