There are a number of ways of finding out more about the cancer and its treatment, and how these are likely to affect you.
How much information you need is up to you. Some people want to find out as much as they can about each treatment option. Others prefer to only know a little.
Information about the cancer
To help you make a decision about cancer treatment, it is useful to know a bit about the cancer and how it is affecting you. This will help you understand your treatment options.
Your healthcare team will usually be able to tell you:
- where in the body the cancer started, such as the breast, bowel or prostate
- what type of cancer it is
- the size of the cancer and whether it has spread to other parts of the body – this is its stage
- how quickly the cancer may grow – this is its grade.
Information about the treatment
It can help to know what each treatment involves and what the differences are between the options you have been given. It is useful to know:
- the aims of the treatment
- how the treatment will be given and how this may affect your day-to-day life
- the possible side effects of the treatment
- what will happen if you do not have treatment
- if there are other treatments available.
You should be able to get all this information from your healthcare team. They should be able to answer your questions and give you some written information to take home. You may find that this is all you need and that you are ready to get on with the treatment. But you may want more information before making any decisions.
We have information about different cancer types and treatments that you might find useful. We also have some information in different languages and formats, including audio, eBooks, easy read, Braille, large print and translations. To find out more, call our cancer support specialists on 0808 808 00 00 or visit www.macmillan.org.uk/information-and-support/resources-and-publications/other-formats.
What further information do you need?
Before looking for more information, think about what you really want to know. What do you need to help you decide about the treatment you have been offered? Is it more medical information, or do you want to know more about the side effects and practical aspects of the treatment?