When Treatment is Finished
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CCMB's Patient & Family Newsletter
When the day finally comes when you have finished treatment, you may experience a confusing mixture of feelings.
There is a great sense of relief that the hardships and life disruptions that treatment brings are over. At the same time, there is often an unsettling return of fear and anxiety, specifically about whether the cancer will come back and what to do after treatment.
You may find that all your emotional and physical energy has gone into getting through your treatments. You may feel exhausted.
But now that you have some energy for it, the emotional impact of your illness (and trying to sort out the meaning of this experience in your life) begins to surface.
Actually, it is at this very time that many people with cancer seek support for the emotional, psychological and spiritual impact of their cancer on both themselves and their loved ones. It can be helpful to talk with others who have been through or are going through some of the same things as you (see our support group listing) or to meet with one of our counselors.
Fatigue is one of the common symptoms that people struggle with during and after treatment. Others may find it difficult to understand this kind of fatigue.
The Patient and Family Resource Centre and the Breast Cancer Centre of Hope have information on how to cope with fatigue. In addition, we have regular information sessions on coping with fatigue presented by a nurse specializing in this area.
In addition, there is new evidence to suggest that exercise decreases fatigue in people with cancer. Look for the Cancer Management Exercise Program, Making Waves, Chemo Savvy, and the Cancer Wellness Program on our Current Programs page for more information.
The Moving Forward After Cancer Treatment Program at CancerCare Manitoba is working to support you, as patients, transition into follow up care after treatment by developing follow up care plans and resource books. Currently, care plans are being distrubuted to colorectal, breast, lymphoma, ovarian, fallopian tube, and peritoneal cancer patients. More patient groups are being developed and will be launched soon.
Your follow up care plan (Part 1, 2, 3) would have been given to you at your last clinic appointment.
Part 1 of the care plan outlines your personal follow up test schedule including necessary tests and appointments, what symptoms to watch for, and a summary of the treatments you received.
It looks like this:
Part 2 of the care plan is available here online by clicking on the tab on the left called " Cancer-Specific Follow Up Care Plan Resources".
Part 3 of the care plan is available here online by clicking on the tab on the left called "General Follow Up Resources".
If you have questions about this initiative, please email us at email@example.com.