Suggestions for Patient
You may have many questions about your care. Your doctor and treating team will be guided on how much you want to know and the questions that you ask.
Make a list of questions to take to your appointment and perhaps take someone with you so that you don't miss anything. Don't be afraid to ask a number of questions or even to ask the same one twice. There are a number of good sources that can help answer questions, available through your local or State Cancer Information Service. Hospital and Community services may offer emotional support either individually or through support groups and networks. Sharing feelings, experiences and ideas can be valuable; spiritual belief may also bring comfort.
Ill health can disrupt family life, and the roles and responsibilities of family members may change. Family members may have different needs at different times, some may discuss issues openly and others may not. This requires patience and understanding and you as the patient should let people know what you are prepared to talk about, with whom and when.
It may be helpful to examine your lifestyle and responsibilities and to reassess your priorities and make adjustments accordingly. Learn to pace yourself and to listen to your body, and accept offers of help from family and friends. The side effects of treatments can also take their toll on your mind and body. Your energy levels and self-esteem may be affected, so continue to recognise your strengths and remind yourself that your loved ones still recognise these traits in you. Try to maintain a healthy diet and good sleeping patterns in order to maintain your strength and assist your recovery from treatment.