Browser does not support script.
Skip to main content
Find out how we produce our information|
Many people are available to help you and your family manage the problems that breathlessness can cause.
Physiotherapists can help you learn breathing techniques. They can offer expert advice about gentle exercise and relaxation, and show you new ways of carrying out day-to-day activities that may be causing you difficulty.
Occupational therapists can help you develop ways of completing tasks and activities at home that are safe and prevent you from getting too breathless. They may be able to give you simple but effective gadgets that can make everyday chores easier to manage. They can also offer expert advice about relaxation.
Different people can offer support in the community. District nurses work closely with GPs and, if needed, can make regular visits to patients and their families at home.
In many areas of the country there are also specialist nurses called palliative care nurses. They’re experienced in assessing and treating your symptoms, and they can offer you support from when you’re diagnosed with cancer. They can also visit you at home and support you and your family. Some palliative care nurses are linked to the local hospice. Your GP can usually arrange for you to be seen by a specialist nurse at home.
Palliative care nurses are sometimes referred to as Macmillan nurses. However, many Macmillan professionals are nurses who have specialist knowledge about a particular type of cancer. You may see them when you’re at a clinic or in hospital.
Marie Curie nurses help to care for people who are having treatment to control their symptoms and want to stay in their own homes. They provide nursing care during the day and overnight. The district nurse usually decides whether to request a Marie Curie nurse.
The hospital social worker can give you information about social services and other benefits you may be able to claim. For example, you may be entitled to meals-on-wheels, a home helper or money to help with hospital transport fares. The social worker may also be able to help arrange childcare during and after treatment and, if necessary, help with the cost of childminders.
Content last reviewed: 1 January 2011
Next planned review: 2013
For answers, support or just a chat, call the Macmillan Support Line free (Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm)
If you have any questions about cancer, need support or just want someone to talk to, ask Macmillan.
If you have any questions about Macmillan we would love to hear from you| .
You can also follow us| on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or YouTube.
© Macmillan Cancer Support 2013
what are these?|