Follow-up for pancreatic cancer

During your treatment, you will usually have regular talks with someone from your cancer team. This may be your specialist doctor or nurse, or another health professional. They can talk to you about what to expect during and after treatment. You can ask about any concerns and needs you have.

You may have a holistic needs assessment to check your care needs. Your cancer team can make a care plan based on this. It should give information about the support you are getting and other services that may be useful.

You should get a copy of the care plan to use at follow-up appointments. You can also use it when you see your GP (or other doctors) about anything not related to the cancer. You can update your care plan whenever you need to.

Some hospitals give you a treatment summary. This describes:

  • the treatment you have had
  • what to expect from future treatment
  • details of follow-up care or tests.

You keep a copy and the hospital should send another one to your GP.

These assessments, care plans and treatment summaries are not used everywhere. But more hospitals are starting to use them.

After treatment is finished, you will have regular follow-up appointments. You will also have follow-up appointments if you are having supportive care. You may keep going to the hospital for these appointments, or you may go to your GP. Sharing the appointments between the GP and hospital is sometimes called a shared care agreement.

You may continue to have regular scans and blood tests, including CA 19-9 tests. Tell your doctor or specialist nurse as soon as possible if you have any problems or new symptoms between appointments.

Many people find they get anxious before appointments. This is natural, and it may help to get support during this time. This can come from family, friends or support organisations such as Pancreatic Cancer UK.

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