Being diagnosed with cancer is one of the most emotional moments that can be experienced by anyone in their lifetime. Aside from knowing that you have cancer, there will also be a lot of changes in your life that you need to go through. Understanding and accepting your condition at first will be very difficult, but learning what to do if diagnosed with cancer will help you become aware of the next steps you need to take.
What to do if diagnosed with cancer
Surely, it is very hard to process everything once you’ve been diagnosed with cancer. However, after sorting your feelings out, it is important to figure out what to do next after your diagnosis.
Here are some questions you need to ask your doctor after confirming that you have cancer:
What kind of cancer do I have?
Knowing what type of cancer you have can help you understand the gravity of your condition. Certain types of cancer are more dangerous than others, just like lung and bronchus cancer, prostate cancer, and breast cancer.
Understanding what kind of cancer you have will help in getting yourself ready for all the possible treatments you need to undergo.
What stage is the cancer?
It is important to know the stage of your cancer since it will determine the following:
- The treatments you need to get such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or surgery.
- It will help predict your survival rate, the growth of your cancer, how cancer will spread, and if there’s a chance that cancer will come back after the treatments.
- You will have the chance to discuss with your doctor the preparations you need to effectively treat cancer.
What treatments are available for my condition?
Different cancers require different treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, bone marrow transplant, immunotherapy, and hormone therapy. You can consult your doctor for the best treatments you can get to remove or kill the cancer.
Do I need to continue my medications?
It is important that you discuss with your physician your concerns about medications since some supplements you’re taking can suppress the effects of the treatments you’re about to receive.
Are treatments painful? Will I suffer from side effects of certain medications?
Usually, cancer symptoms already bring great suffering to cancer patients. Common cancer treatments can cause pain, however, the pain you might experience would normally come from your body’s reaction to the treatment itself.
When it comes to medications, it’s normal that side effects might show up, but your doctor may have something that can help you deal with those.
Can you recommend someone for a second opinion?
When you have cancer, all you would want is the best treatment you could get. Asking for a second opinion will give you more options on how to treat your cancer more effectively.
What are the changes I will have to go through? How will cancer affect my life?
As a cancer patient, you have the right to know the effects of cancer in your body. Also, the treatments and medications might result in some noticeable physical changes that will take time to return to normal.
You can also check with your doctor if you can continue doing your usual activities during the treatment since the side effects of the treatments might prohibit you from doing your regular routine.
What cancer support services are available for me and my family?
Since you’re about to undergo several challenges involving your physical, mental, and financial state, it is best if you are aware of the following cancer support services the hospital can offer. These services are useful not only for you but for your family members as well.
How to cope after being diagnosed with cancer?
One of the things you might want to do if diagnosed with cancer is to learn how to manage the situation. Here are some coping tips that might help you after a cancer diagnosis:
- Find the right time to share your diagnosis with your family and friends. This might be difficult to do since it is a sensitive topic to talk about. But, doing this will give your loved ones a chance to find ways on how they can help you recover.
- Expect all the changes that will happen may it be physical, mental, or financial. Being open to change will help lessen your worries, your stress, and anxiousness during the treatments.
- Accept help from family and friends because no one should face cancer alone.
- Do not forget to look after yourself by maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Consult your doctor for exercises and a diet that is right for your condition and do what makes you happy but with strict precautions.
A cancer diagnosis is truly disheartening. It might take time for the patients to accept their condition, but they eventually get there.
Being knowledgeable about the things you must do after the diagnosis can greatly affect how well you can manage the condition. Yes, some treatments can make you feel better, but one of the most essential factors of recovery is being with people who are there to support you along the way.
Learn more about Support and Coping, here.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.