Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Tips To Prepare for Chemotherapy and Radiation

Select Your Teams, Organize Your Medical Records and Do Your Research

by Margot Malin

Have you or has someone you know recently been diagnosed with cancer? Here are some helpful things to consider before starting treatment.

This post is condensed version of a more detailed post appearing in the Breast Cancer Yoga Blog.

    1. Choose your medical and support teams. Your "medical team" members can include: your surgeon, your oncologist, your oncology nurses, your nurse navigator, and a cancer coach.  Your "support team" can include friends, family and individuals you meet through support organizations.
             Click to learn more about nurse navigators and cancer coaches.

Medical Team - Cancer Support
2.  Do your research so that you thoroughly understand your treatment protocol. Be active in selecting your course of treatment if you are given a series of choices or options. Having some control and “buying in” will help your frame of mind and can even enhance your outcome. Do as much research as you feel comfortable with. Focus on the important facts. The book TheWeb-Savvy Patient: An Insider's Guide to Navigating the Internet When Facing Medical Crisis is a helpful resource.

3.  Ask about side effects. Be sure to review the potential physical side effects that might result from your treatment. Not all chemotherapy drugs cause the same side effects. Being aware of the side effects caused by the medications you will receive can help you to prepare in advance and purchase products which can help reduce these side effects. To view products to help relieve cancer treatment side effects visit the on line store: http://www.lotstolivefor.com/.

  4. Organize your medical records.  An important way to take control of your health is to take control of your medical records. Be sure you have them organized and in one easily accessible location. You will be visiting a number of doctors and facilities and receiving a variety of treatments and tests.  It is unlikely that they will all be coordinated at the practitioner level.  The MinervaHealth Manager helps you organize your health records in a single coordinated location and it is portable and can be carried with you to doctor appointments and treatments.

 5.  Explore Resources.  In addition to your “teams” there are many support organizations that can help.  A good starting point is to look at the “Collection of CancerResources” that we have compiled on the Lots To Live For website. Your treatment facility might also recommend or have list of support groups. 

 6.  Nutrition and Supplements can help.  The right food can make your body stronger.  Carefully selected nutritional supplements can be a valuable tool in rebuilding your body’s immune system. You might also want to consult a nutritionist who specializes in cancer nutrition.  Two books of interest include: American Cancer Society Complete Guide to Nutrition for Cancer Survivors: Eating Well,Staying Well During and After Cancer and The Whole-Food Guide for Breast Cancer Survivors: A Nutritional Approach to Preventing Recurrence Continue healthy eating during treatment and after treatment is complete.

  7.  Strengthen your body through careful exercise and stretching. Optimize your mobility, strength and conditioning before your surgery or other treatment protocol. This can help reduce your recovery time. 

You can create positive energy by embracing these 7 tips. The key takeaways are to: take control and be proactive, be organized, create support networks using the numerous resources available and make educated choices.

To read the full post click: http://breastcanceryogablog.com/2013/10/31/7-tips-for-preparing-for-chemotherapy-and-radiation/
Just Diagnosed Cancer Kit

Looking for just the right gift for someone who has just been diagnosed with cancer?
The "Just Diagnosed Kit" includes a collection of helpful items to begin a journey towards wellness.
Click here to learn more about this gift: http://www.lotstolivefor.com/just-diagnosed-cancer-kit/