After treatment

After treatment is over, you’ll probably be keen to get back to doing all the things you did before your diagnosis. But you may still be coping with the side effects of treatment, such as tiredness, and the emotional effects.

Recovering from cancer and its treatment takes time. You’ll usually find that the day-to-day things that occupied you before your diagnosis will gradually start to take over again. Going back to work and getting back to the interests you had before can be big steps forward.

Some people feel that although they wouldn’t have chosen to go through this experience, it’s changed them in positive ways and helped them to think about their priorities. They may decide to focus more on relationships with family and friends or on doing the things they’ve always wanted to do.

Positive lifestyle choices

Some people want to make changes to their lifestyle after cancer. You might choose to make just a few changes or completely change the way you live. Adopting a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be very difficult or expensive.

It can sometimes appear that living a healthy lifestyle involves a lot of hard work and denying yourself all of the pleasures in life. However, it is about making small, achievable changes to the way you live that will improve your health and well-being. Your healthy lifestyle will be individual to you, and what is right for you may not be right for someone else. A healthy lifestyle can include having a well-balanced diet, getting some exercise, reducing stress and being involved in your healthcare. You will need to think about any side effects of treatment when planning changes to your diet and exercise. Don’t try to do too much too soon.

A well-balanced diet should include:

  • plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables (at least five portions a day)
  • foods high in fibre, such as beans and cereals
  • plenty of water or other non-alcoholic fluids.

Try to reduce your intake of:

  • red meat and animal fats
  • alcohol
  • salted, pickled and smoked foods.

Before making major changes to your diet, it’s a good idea to discuss your plans with your specialist or a dietitian at the hospital.

If you smoke, stop. Stopping has many health benefits and reduces your risk of other diseases such as heart disease and stroke.

Exercise does not have to be particularly strenuous. You can start gently and build up the amount of physical activity you do. Whatever your age or physical health, there will be some kind of exercise you could try, such as walking, hiking, cycling or swimming. Activities like gardening, dancing and playing sport are also good to try.

Being involved in your healthcare

It is very important to always attend your surveillance or follow-up appointments. If you can’t attend, contact your doctor or clinic to arrange another appointment as soon as possible.

Check your remaining testicle every month. Men who’ve already had testicular cancer have an increased risk of getting a new primary cancer in the other testicle.

Understanding more about testicular cancer and its treatment can also help you to cope. It means you can discuss treatment, tests and check-ups with your doctors and nurses, and be involved in making decisions. This can make you feel more confident and give you back a feeling of control.

Let your doctor know of any new symptoms or ongoing symptoms that aren’t improving.

Back to Beginning to recover

Follow up

You’ll have regular appointments after treatment with possible blood tests, x-rays or scans. It’s very important you go to these.

Sex and fertility

Certain treatments may affect your fertility or their side effects may reduce your sex drive. But this is usually temporary.