Lots of them! About everything and anything that you and the family member may experience. Ask how many cases of your type of cancer the doctor has treated. What are the side effects of the medications that may be given. How often will you need to see the doctor? Is radiation indicated for your tumor and what are the side effects of that? Is it a highly focused beam of radiation, avoiding other important structures like heart, lungs and esophagus? Anything that will impact how you feel physically and emotionally is worth exploring. It helps to be prepared for what lies ahead. Always have a plan, you can navigate anything as long as we know the plan and what are the next steps to getting the right treatment and support from your healthcare providers!
You may have a team of care providers to include the doctors ( an oncologist, a radiation oncologist, a surgeon etc), a fellow (a doctor training in a specialty), a resident or two (graduated medical school but completing their training), a nurse practitioner or physician assistant known as physician extenders. They are trained healthcare providers that work under the supervision of the doctor but act to improve efficiency of the doctor. There may be nurse navigators that literally help navigate the somewhat complex treatment plan, arranging appointments, relaying messages to the team, providing support and taking care of paperwork like short term disability, Family Medical leave and SSI documents. All are invaluable resources! Not every practice will have all these participants, but good to know who is who.
Whatever brings you peace and comfort. Yoga, meditation, chanting, visualization, art, reading, listening to music, walking and enjoying nature. Find something and do it every day. Do not be afraid to ask for something to settle your anxiety from your medical team. Your family is there to provide you strength, but remember they are going through the unknown with you , so the calmer everyone is the more that everyone focuses on getting the right treatment.
Our Thymic Carcinoma Facebook group that is a closed group for people and families to share and provide each other support through their journey.
Find information on living with cancer, whether you are newly diagnosed, a survivor, or a family member or friend of someone who is living with cancer.
To support patients with thymic cancer by fostering research and awareness of this aggressive, difficult-to-treat, and little-understood disease.
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