8 Steps to better balance
Survivorship begins with diagnosis and extends through the balance of life. It stresses the importance of supporting of one’s physical, psychological, spiritual, and social needs during and beyond cancer.
“Anything that has changed because of your cancer diagnosis or your treatment is a symptom of your disease,” said Teresa Wittenberg, MS, PAC, GI Oncology Stanford University. “So these start to include all these other aspects of your life: employment concerns, fear of uncertainty, fear of the unknown, relationships with others whether that is your spouse, your caregiver, your children, your coworkers, or your friends.”
Following a NET diagnosis, remember to take good care of yourself.
Wittenberg discusses the importance of improving quality of life for NET patients in small increments in her talk at the NETRF Bay Area Patient Education Conference. “I have patients struggling with isolation who have diarrhea and can’t get to work or go out with friends. So we have to focus on making things just a little better, even if we can’t resolve it completely. Improvements mean something.”
Self-care and symptom management are key components of a survivorship care plan. Care teams should provide patients completing primary cancer treatment with a survivorship care plan according to recommendations by the Institute of Medicine. A survivorship care plan documents a patient’s diagnosis and treatment, but also provides a roadmap for meeting ongoing psychological, physical, and social needs.
Learn more about survivorship topics
- Symptom Management Carcinoid Syndrome
- Symptom Management: Diarrhea Management
- Living with NETs: GI Symptom Management
- Living with NETs Integrative Oncology & Psychosocial Health