Thanks to advances in cancer treatments, the American Cancer Society estimates there are nearly 12 million cancer survivors in the United States today. Cancer survivorship may mean facing complex health needs, living with after- effects of cancer treatments, and financial issues.
According to the National Coalition For Cancer Survivorship (NCCS), “Cancer survivorship is a day-to-day, ongoing process that begins with your diagnosis and continues through the rest of your life.” The NCCS provides the Cancer Survival Toolbox which helps cancer survivors adapt to life after cancer.
Tips for moving on after treatment
- Seeing a new doctor – At some point, you may be seeing a new doctor. Keep copies of all your medical records to give to your new doctor.
- Eat healthy – During and after cancer treatment eating right may be hard. Creating healthy eating habits is one of the best things you can do for your well-being.
- Exercise – Being active can help reduce your fatigue and make your muscles strong. Talk with your doctor before starting a program.
- Emotional health – A lot of cancer survivors are filled with emotions. Support can come from family, friends, cancer support groups, church groups, online support groups, or counselors.
Surviving cancer is a complex, continual process. It is not unusual for a cancer survivor to wonder,” When will the cancer return?” Survivors, family and friends should also recognize that it is difficult to maintain a positive outlook after facing a cancer diagnosis. Living with hope is imperative for healthy coping.
The U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center will host its Cancer Survivor’s Day event on Sunday, June 9.
The Cancer AnswerLine™ is a dedicated phone line at the Comprehensive Cancer Center that is staffed by oncology nurses five days a week, 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. at 800-865-1125. They have a combined 105 years of experience helping patients and their families who have questions about cancer.
The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s 1,000 doctors, nurses, care givers and researchers are united by one thought: to deliver the highest quality, compassionate care while working to conquer cancer through innovation and collaboration. The center is among the top-ranked national cancer programs, and #1 in Michigan for cancer patient care. Seventeen multidisciplinary clinics offer one-stop access to teams of specialists for personalized treatment plans, part of the ideal patient care experience. Patients also benefit through access to promising new cancer therapies.