Your feelings during and after a donor stem cell transplant
Having a transplant is probably one of the most stressful situations you’ll ever face.
As well as being physically demanding, it’s very emotionally demanding. It’s normal to find your emotions difficult to cope with at times.
There may be times when you’re anxious, frightened or depressed. You may ask yourself questions like, ‘Is the treatment working?’, ‘Will my blood counts ever go up?’ or ‘How am I going to cope with the side effects?’
Talking to family and friends about how you’re feeling often helps. You can also talk to the nurses and doctors for advice and support. If you’re struggling to cope with low moods, let your nurse or doctor know. You may find it helpful to talk to someone such as a counsellor, a member of your religious faith or a social worker. The hospital staff can arrange this for you.
You may find our sections on the emotional effects of cancer and talking about your cancer helpful.
As the time for you to leave hospital comes closer, you may find yourself becoming impatient and longing to get home. However, it can be hard to readjust to leading a more independent life again after spending so much time in hospital. There’ll still be some restrictions on your life, and it may seem as though you’ll never be able to go back to your normal life again. But as you recover, you’ll usually find that gradually the focus becomes your day-to-day life rather than the treatment you’ve been through.
Our section on adjusting to life after cancer has tips and helpful information.
You’ll still need a lot of support so it’s important to talk to family and friends about how you’re feeling. You may also want to look at other sources of support, such as support groups and other useful organisations.
Self-help or support groups offer a chance to talk to other people who may be in a similar situation and facing the same challenges as you. Joining a group can be helpful if you live alone or don’t feel able to talk about your feelings with people around you. Not everyone finds talking in a group easy, so it might not be for you. Try going along to see what the group is like before you decide.
You contact our cancer support specialists for information about cancer support groups across the UK.
Many people get support through the internet. There are online support groups, social networking sites, forums, chat rooms and blogs for people affected by cancer. You can use these to share your experiences, ask questions, get advice from others and give advice based on your experiences.
Our online community is a social networking site where you can chat to people in our chat rooms, blog your journey, make friendships and join support groups.