My father was recently diagnosed with the very rare and aggressive Merkel Cell Carcinoma in the lungs and elsewhere. In my scramble to do everything possible to fix it, I found this amazing organization, The Second Opinion, who reviewed my father's case with a full panel of amazing doctors (oncologists and radiologists). They pooled their collective knowledge and came up with some remarkable, cutting-edge treatment options which are now being reviewed by his oncologist. This is an amazing service provided at zero cost to those seeking a true, unbiased second opinion. I've just donated to their cause and I hope you will consider doing the same. If you have a moment, please check it out. Thank you. ❤
I had a wonderful experience with this organization. I had concerns and questions about proposed therapy for my recurrent cancer. A simple phone call to them got the ball rolling. They sent me all the forms I needed, they took care of getting my medical records etc. A panel of physicians from radiologists to oncologists reviewed my case and went over all of their suggestions with me ( via Zoom). I then received a printed copy of all that was discussed. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. I highly recommend reaching out to them if you want a second opinion.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer and heard about this nonprofit through a support group of mine. I was newly navigating this disease and tried to research as much as possible to be informed about what was to come and arm myself with as much information as I could to make the best treatment decisions, but only having the internet and the medical team that was covered by my insurance I was left feeling unsure about the whole situation. The opportunity to get a free second opinion outside of my medical team was priceless. Being able to talk with doctors from all over about my case gave me the confidence to be able to decide how to move forward with treatment. I couldn't be happier and more thankful to the organization for all of their help.
This was an unbelievably good experience. 5 oncologists spend their whole day doing case review and second opinions for 3 patients. Oncology pathologists, oncologists, radiation oncologists. Also excellent volunteer support staff, one of whom was a two time cancer survivor, so personal experience and understanding. The physician panel did a thorough review, with all the ct & pet scan etc images up on the screen; went over all the labs; the staging; current medical trials, and the patient’s options going forward, with very detailed explanation of each. (I was not the pt, I was one of her support people). Quite a bit of the detailed review of her diagnostic studies was new to the pt. She had found it difficult to get detailed explanations from her oncology team. For me ( a retired ICU nurse, it was an incredible experience, and really clarified the pts best course of action, with great detail as to why. As we all know, most practicing physicians do not have the time to do this with ANY of their patients, much less each one. The support staff also spent a lot of time with us, going over resources available, and a resource for any future inquiries. An AWESOME service, all volunteer!
Thesecondopinion - free second opinion for San Francisco cancer patients. It is a group of professional doctors who give their time and experts opinion regarding cancer diagnosis, prognosis and treatment.
I had breast cancer in 2006. Thesecondopinion helped me tremendously.
They explained to me my diagnosis, prognosis and treatment.
They calmed my fear.
They talked to my doctor on my behalf .
They gave me strength to fight.
July of 2019 I was diagnost with skin cancer.
Even I'm patient with experience, I got scared and upset. Thanks to thesecondopinion, I again got help and support.
I highly recommend thesecondopinion to people dealing with cancer.
Thesecondopinion is GreatNonprofit.
They're great. Thanks to Lori Bode, all doctors and staff.
When i was struggling with decisions to be made about my future, second opinion stepped in and gave me hope. The in depth second opinion given was so thorough and complete that it clarified many things about my diagnosis and gave me the information i needed to make an informed treatment decision during a stressful time. The input was invaluable.
As a volunteer and a cancer survivor I see the impact The Second Opinion makes on patients lives. Often they come to their panel review confused by their diagnosis, afraid of the treatment, and unsure of their future. They come out of the panel review confident in the knowledge of their disease, understand why treatment is being recommended and see a path forward. This is an incredible non-profit that truly cares about the people they serve.
I am honored to be a volunteer with thesecondopinion. As a cancer survivor myself, I know the value of receiving a second opinion. This organization is the answer many patients are looking for when they need to understand their diagnosis and make treatment decisions. I see the care and compassion given to every patient by the staff and the volunteer physicians. What an incredible organization!
Since your uplifting consultation, my life has returned to almost normal because I believe now that Kaiser's treatments improve my chances of disease-free survival. No more distrust can ruin my pleasure in life!
When camping on Mt. Diablo for Easter my positive feelings were like a colorful collection of Easter eggs. Spring seemed beautiful as ever and my belief in doctors' integrity warmed my heart.
My search for financial support of your amazing assistance in making cancer patients feel professionally consulted(WITHOUT CHARGING A FEE) will continue as long as I live. You are the most admirable group of people!
I am a grateful recipient of thesecondopinion. I was diagnoses with prostate cancer early this year and was confused as to the best treatment option. The opinion I received from thesecondopinion specialist helped me greatly in making that decision.
I underwent surgery in May this year. All early results, including the biopsy following surgery as well as my first PSA are indicative that the prostate cancer was successfully and completely removed from my body.
I want to thank you for your gracious service and thoughtful kindness. Also many thanks to the great doctors who give so much of their precious time. Your program is immeasurable service to many!
Thank you again!
Thank you so much for all your help and guidance. What a wonderful service Thesecondopinion offers. I am very fortunate to have had so many doctors review and report on my case.
In December 2016 I was diagnosed with Stage III non-small cell lung cancer at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto. A biopsy was also performed at Stanford and confirmed the tumor in my right lower lobe plus cancerous cells in lymph nodes near my esophagus. My Stanford team recommended 3 rounds of high dose chemo therapy followed by surgery to remove the tumor.
I asked thesecondopinion to review Stanford's findings, diagnosis and treatment recommendations. A panel of highly qualified physicians with thesecondopinion thoroughly reviewed my case, findings and Stanford's treatment recommendations. I met with the panel in San Francisco and they answered all my questions, agreed with Stanford's findings and treatment plan. Having that second opinion gave me a great deal of comfort knowing my recommended treatment plan was spot on for my condition.
Unfortunately, after 2 rounds of Chemo I suffered a moderate heart attach on March 10th, 2017. In light of that event my Stanford Team decided surgery to remove the tumor after Chemo would be far too risky. They therefore recommended 5 rounds or Chemo plus 22 daily sessions of radiation treatments. Once again I asked thesecondopinion to review this new treatment recommendation. And again, after careful review they concurred with my Stanford Team's findings and recommendations. Once again the professional panel of physicians at thesecondopinion gave me a great deal of comfort and the courage to proceed with the combination of chemo and radiation therapy.
I'm a true believer in thesecondopinion and recommend anyone with cancer seeking answers contact this great organization. And, the most beautiful part is there is absolutely 'no charge' for this fantastic service and the piece of mind.
My experience with thesecondopinion was so satisfying -just so you know-the care and monitoring process we put i place (supported by thesecondopinion professionals) has worked beautifully! I am doing fine now- Grateful for the sense of security and control thesecondopinion provided.
I am lucky enough to be a program coordinator at thesecondopinion which allows me to help others in understanding their cancer diagnosis. I am originally from Southern California, and have primarily worked in customer service, however after watching my grandmother go through breast cancer treatment, and a cancer scare myself in December, I felt the need to help patients on a person to person basis. Not only does this organization assist patients in a stressful time, but does so with compassion and empathy that truly benefits each individual patient.
It is with a very full and grateful heart that I am sending you an update on my case. After seeing you all there, we changed our insurance and transferred my care to the doctors up here in Northern California. I had the tumor removed , 30 radiation treatments. Good food, exercise and supplements all through out the treatments and I am happy to say that my current CT scan shows no new spots, the pulmonary nodules that the previous hospital said were metastatic and therefore put me at Stage 4 - are no longer an issue per the Oncologist here. All is stable, I do have some inflammation from the radiation but expected that. Will follow up with a PET scan in September. Words cannot express how thankful I am for you all and the doctors up here where I live for having a whole different perspective and thoughts process for my care. Thank you so much and please share with all that were involved with me. I tell folks about you guys all of the time. Thank you and God bless all of you and all of us fighting cancer and other debilitating illnesses.
I am SOOOOO Grateful to your doctors for supporting me and helping me twice, even, and I just HAD to share my GREAT NEWS with you all! I had a CT scan follow up on Tuesday (5/29/18) and my doctor told me I no longer have ANY cancer in my breast! I've been taking that drug that starts with an A. No surgery. My husband and I just REALLY wanted to tell you all this GREAT News! We are so appreciative of your doctors and the way they helped us, just so grateful. Please tell them right away! We are CELEBRATING!
To the second opinion,
I do wish I could donate more, but I only have a limited income and this is my monthly tithing to my church. Since you were my "angel" this month, I'm sending it to you. I just wish there was some way I could express my gratitude for your service you provided and the grace and friendliness and compassion in how it was given.
Thank you so very much!
To my friends at 2nd Opinion,
Thank you so very much for your support and for giving me such detailed, diverse individual to me about my case information. So many of you coming together to discuss MY case and it showed that you CARED and had looked at all of my background before we sat down to meet.
You really helped me feel better about my decision and gave me strength.
Best wishes to you all!
I left my thesecondopinion panel feeling very fulfilled, not always the case with cancer situations. Thank you for the time and dedication your whole staff and doctors gave us.
I am very grateful for the chance to be included as a patient at thesecondopinion. I was diagnosed with endometrial cancer and neuroendocrine cancer in my lung in 2014. After telling my doctor I wanted a second opinion, she recommended that I try thesecondopinion. The office staff was cheerful, prompt, and professional. The panel was made up of doctor specialists from different disciplines. They had all looked at my records ahead of time and were ready to discuss and answer any questions about my case and then they made recommendations for a plan. It totally put my mind at ease to have another opinion about the type of cancer, staging, and treatment needed. It is very humbling when professionals of this caliber volunteer their time to help people in their darkest time of need. THANK YOU!!
Thesecondopinion is a place where cancer patients come for help, support and hope.
I'm a former patient.
I met there beautiful people who helped me to understand my diagnosis , prognosis, who gave me hope and who talk to me and my oncologist on my behalf.
All for free . Thesecondopinion is great nonprofit . Special thanks to Director Lori Bode.
I THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for saving my life thesecondopinion!!
I had a wonderful experience at thesecondopinion! I was able to ask all of my many questions and receive thorough and understandable answers. It's definitely a place where patients can feel "heard" by doctors - sometimes for the first time since their diagnosis.
In March I started working at thesecondopinion as their Program Coordinator. It is absolutely my favorite position thus far as I Iove interacting with and supporting our patients! I feel that we are providing an invaluable service and we cherish our volunteer physicians who make this all possible. Way to go, thesecondopinion!
Immense Thank Yous to each of you for the time and attention you gave me regarding my health concerns. Your insight and advice are PRICELESS to me and my family and we feel quite privileged to have been a part of thesecondopinion program!
Thesecondopinion is a unique organization in that patients and their families have the opportunity, free of charge, to ask face-to-face questions of an objective panel of doctors who specialize in the patient’s specific treatment needs. This experience provides clarity for cancer patients who face difficult decisions in their treatment.
I had the honor of attending a second opinion panel in support of a patient, and I found the panel physicians to be very knowledgeable, professional, and informative. The staff obtained all of the medical records, pathology slides, and radiology for second opinion panel to review. They were very welcoming and made us feel right at home!
Thesecondopinion in an invaluable resource for patients with cancer and families coping with the illness of their loved ones.
Thank you to the second opinion doctors and staff for all the information and help! I was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer and I was not feeling comfortable with my treatment plan. I wanted a second opinion to be sure I was on the right path and that the medical industry was not out to save money and not give me the best treatment plan possible. After sitting with a panel of very kind and informative doctors I learned I was in fact on the best treatment plan and they also gave me hope. I walked out of there feeling better than I have about my diagnosis in weeks. Thanks again!
I just want to express my gratitude to Lori and Dr. Kleckner at the Second Opinion during my time of desperate need. I was in a situation where two doctors gave me two different treatment options which caused me a lot of anxiety and stress in making the final decision. In addition, i had a time constraint to make my decision. In order for one of the treatment to be effective, I need to start right away...what should I do??? Thanks to Lori and Dr. Kleckner who were able to quickly helped me with their valuable advices which gave me the confidence and comfort that I need to make my final decision for my treatment. The Second Opinion is truly a terrific organization which provided much-needed support for cancer patients.
This organization not only helped me in understanding my cancer diagnosis but also gave me the reassurance I needed to proceed with the proper treatment that is necessary in defeating this disease. I am utterly grateful to both the coordinator, Lori, and the panel who oversaw my case. If facing unknowns or uncertainties regarding your cancer diagnosis and treatment, or even need reassurance that you are headed in the correct direction, I highly recommend reaching out to thesecondopinion for help. We need more organizations like this out there!
I was fortunate to be granted a panel second opinion with Thesecondopinion. It was a wonderful experience. Everyone was professional and caring. It gave me relief to know I was getting the best treatment and that everything is being done to give me the quality of life I want to have. Thank you to everyone on the panel as well as all the ladies in the office. You made the experience for my family and I very comfortable.
When my cancer recurred earlier this year, I was shocked. My husband and I wanted an independent 2nd opinion to help us decide how to proceed.
The Second Opinion did just that! They freely gave of their time and expertise, including with follow-up questions. They took care of details big and small. They made my husband and me feel comfortable.
We are very grateful that The Second Opinion thought to provide a recorded audio file of our session with the panelists. The panelists covered so much useful information with us that was hard to absorb it all in real time. The recording allowed us to review the information at our leisure. This helped us to proceed with confidence.
We are still very touched by the kindness, thoughtfulness, efficiency and generosity that was shown to us by the folks at The Second Opinion. The service that they provide at an anxious time is truly amazing! We HIGHLY recommend them!
When my husband was diagnosed with an aggressive form of prostate cancer, we were overwhelmed with the choices of treatment available and which one to choose. Not one doctor would tell us what he should do! Thankfully, the wonderful staff and Doctors at The Second Opinion helped us navigate the mirade of options and make a decision on how best to proceed to treat my husband's cancer. The relief and peace of mind we felt were just what we needed at that time! My husband even received personal phone calls from one of the Doctors, which was very comforting to him. I'm so grateful to this amazing organization and all of the work that they do!
Just a note to say how grateful we are to you, Lori, Cheri, Joanie, Dr. Kleckner and the members of the panel for a wonderful experience last Friday. Your combination of professionalism, expertise, generosity, warmth and humor is extraordinary, and we left with a sense of confidence that we are pursuing the right treatment track.
Prior to working for this wonderful nonprofit I referred numerous women diagnosed with breast cancer to thesecondopinion. Most of these women were newly diagnosed and often times were delaying treatment, because they were undecided about their treatment options, or did not fully understand the benefits of each treatment option. Some of the women I referred just wanted to hear from an outside independent medical team that they were receiving optimal care and doing all they could to prevent the cancer from returning. Having free access to an independent second opinion helped these women gain the knowledge they needed to make informed treatment decisions. It also helped to alleviate some of the anxiety and emotional trauma of a cancer diagnosis.
The Second Opinion provided a complete record review and treatment options for my mother's cancer diagnosis. Words can't express our gratitude to the Second Opinion during our time of need. Their care and compassion is exceptional and I would highly recommend the Second Opinion to anyone seeking medical guidance.
I have heard first hand about all of the valuable help provided by Second Opinion
After being given an unexpected treatment diagnosis I searched for another opinion. The Doctors and staff at Thesecondopinion were professional, compassionate and caring. Their explanation of my medical situation was thorough and basic enough for my husband and I to understand. They were patient with my many questions and in the end we felt confident with their recommendation.
The Second Opinion is a truly superior non-profit with a mission to help all cancer patients, regardless of income.
This is a great organization with a caring staff--- an absolute must visit by cancer patients who want to understand more about their cancer. And all services are free.
theSecondopinion provides a service which is valuable and, as far as I can determine ,unique in the country. The availability of a truly objective, multidisciplinary second opinion in adult oncology gives valuable guidance, advice, and support to patients when they are at their most vulnerable.
Terrific organization providing much-needed support to patients and their families. I'm honored to serve on the Board of Directors.
Fantastic! The staff made me feel so welcome and comfortable and willing to do whatever they could to help. Without them I might not have found the additional tumor and a path towards healing.
As a cancer widow, I know first hand the stresses and anxiety surrounding a diagnosis. What do you do next? Who do you call? Should you trust what you have been told?
TheSecondOpinion (TSO) places the knowledge and power around these situations back in the arms of the patient. TSO does this by offering free, comprehensive, multidisciplinary second opinions from a panel of board certified volunteer physicians. Dealing with cancer is difficult enough without the inevitable second guessing that occurs when you aren't sure what to do.
TSO enables patients and their families to move forward with decisions that are informed and collaborative so that they can focus on getting through the process confidently together. That's a powerful gift - and it makes a difference.
I met with the staff of thesecondopinion and the wonderful doctors almost four years ago. I left that meeting with a new lease on life, planned and made several trips and then rescued my "partner" Cooper (dog). After meeting with you, I felt confident enough to take on the responsibility...Thesecondopinion made a BIG difference for me.
I was referred to The Second Opinion.org by my hair professional as I was entering cancer treatment. I am completely blown away, as was my partner who attended with me, by the level of the offering from this organization. A panel of doctors familiarized themselves with my case, and we sat and discussed to answer all my questions. This was extremely helpful for me in making some tough decisions about what treatment I was willing to accept and what I was willing to reject. Very hard stuff! I came away from this experience feeling like a much better informed and prepared person to participate in my own health care. They are of the highest professional level and really know what they're doing.
I first found out about thesecondopinion about a year after one of my dear friends had died of cancer. I knew she and her husband had really struggled with finding out what was "WRONG" and it was a heartbreaking time for all of their family and friends. I knew that they had found "peace" before she passed but I didn't know that it had been attained through their interaction with thesecondopinion. My friend's widower went on to become the President of the Board of Directors for TSO and recruited me to join the Board in recent years. He was so impressed with how much they had helped their family in a time of need. Since my involvement with TSO I have seen this happen time and time again. They do good work.
I have been associated with TSO since 2006 and currently serve as President of the Board of Directors. I recently had the opportunity to use our organization when my husband of 38 years was diagnosed with melanoma. Compassion, clarity and choice. That is what we do and I am so grateful that I can help with continuing the mission.
thesecondopinion does an amazing job in supporting people in dealing with a cancer diagnosis. Highly recommended!
I referred several people to you that were given pretty grim verdicts. 2 are still alive 5 years later. Both have lower energy but all of them tole me "you saved my life!" It brings tears. Hopefully you know you came through for them. A 3rd person whose cancer had really spread when she came to thesecondopinion and she lived for 3 more years than expected which she undoubtedly would not have without your intervention. It took her son and daughter with one on the arms and one on the legs to have her get a second opinion. You have saved/extended lives. Thank you.
I as very grateful of the services provided to me the SecondOpinion Staff. I first met with the team when I was initially diagnosed with Stage 4 Kidney Cancer, during the meeting they were supportive, caring and informative reviewing my case. I went to them a second time this past June, which I was even more grateful, since they usually meet with a patient one time. After reviewing my case again, they recommended with a specific Doctor, that was approved by my oncologist. In short, I'm completing my recovery form the surgery and at this point off all medications for the cancer! I have recommended The SecondOpinion to many people for the great, supportive, honest and caring service that they provide.
After a recent diagnosis of breast cancer a friend mentioned her excellent experience using "the second opinion" to discuss her own cancer diagnosis. I met with my panel who had carefully reviewed all of my medical records. The panel listened very carefully to my concerns and helped me come up with a treatment plan that was specific to my situation and my family history. I was then able to approach my own doctors with the plan that was readily accepted. I was thankful to have a place to run by options and check out the advice given to me by my own medical team. In addition to the excellent knowledge, I found the panelists very warm and humane. I would recommend this service (and have) to others.
Thesecondopinion provides a vital service unavailable even at the most prestigious of facilities FOR FREE to California residents. A group of reputable up-to-date physicians who specialize in cancer volunteer their time to assist vulnerable patients in the management of their disease.
Our client surveys consistently report how having access to a second opinion has helped them on multiple levels – from truly understanding their diagnosis and ability to plan for their futures, to ways to improve symptom management and connections to additional support services.
This is the only organization of its kind in the United States, surviving solely by word of mouth and volunteerism for more than 40 years!
I was diagnosed with high grade T2 bladder cancer at a NCI-Recognized Cancer Center. Translation: bad news at a very good place. Almost on a whim I visited TheSecondOpinion. Short story: they discovered an error in the diagnosis that was accepted by my docs and reversed the direction of my treatment. Without TheSecondOpinion my life would be very different.
I am so thankful for having the opportunity to go to thesecondopinion and participate in a panel with their amazing doctors. It was a breath of fresh air to get a 2nd opinion. What a needed organization they run there!! All of the staff at thesecondopinion are special people. I hope they are around for another 25 years. I'm so blessed to have been selected to visit them. thesecondopinion is a wonderful service for people diagnosed with cancer.
To give moral support, I accompanied a friend to her appointment with thesecondopinion. I was very impressed with the welcoming attitude of the staff and the caring and positive atmosphere during the discussions that took place while we were there.
TSO is a wonderful organization, and I am so grateful that this benevolent service is available to cancer patients.
Kudos to all who give of their time and expertise to this organization!
Having been in medical oncology practice for over 30 years I learned how important it is for patients to both understand their disease and have clarity with respect to choices of treatment. Thesecondopinion provides free second opinions to cancer patients in the State of California by utilizing over 60 volunteer cancer specialists who review the chart, imaging and pathology and meet as a multidisciplinary panel in person with the patient and their family in an informal setting. I have been privileged to be medical director of thesecondopinion for the past 3 years and have seen first hand the impact the organization has in helping people make peace with their disease.
I joined the board after attending six memorial services in seven weeks for friends, family members and neighbors all of whom had died from some form of cancer. I wanted to work with an agency that directly touches patients lives across all types of cancer and provides significant, immediate benefits.
TSO does just that. The physicians are passionate about helping patients and their families understand and make informed decisions regarding their disease and various treatment options.
The organization has been slow to grow and expand, which was another key attraction to me as there is much potential and the services should be easily replicated across other geographic regions. My background lends itself to this type of challenge, thus I hope that we can spur some growth changes so that many more cancer patients will benefit from the TSO model.
Thesecondopinion is an amazing agency that I wholeheartedly support. Having a history of cancer in my family, I have personally seen the fear, confusion, and frustration that a cancer diagnosis can have on both the patient and their families. Having a strong support network, a place to turn for deeper understanding and answers, is critical.
Giving those who have been diagnosed with new or recurrent cancer the opportunity to sit in person (!) with 4-6 doctors from different specialties to ask questions and receive an independent and multi-disciplinary review of their diagnosis is such a valuable opportunity that is unique only to this organization.
This is a truly profound opportunity for patients, who walk away with a deeper understanding and clarity. The great service provided and the talent and compassion of those involved in the organization make me proud to stand behind and support their efforts.
Review from Guidestar
What a great resource! The only agency in the US that provides free multidisciplinary second opinions. Instead of just one doctor from one discipline reviewing medical records, thesecondopinion provides 4 to 6 doctors from different specialties and from different hospitals...and all are volunteers...Unlike other opinions, the patient is required to meet the doctors in a panel format so they can ask questions directly and express concerns. Everything is tape recorded and the patient keeps the tape.