Kidney Cancer - Follow-up Care

What type of follow-up care have you, a friend, or relative received for kidney cancer?

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What happens after treatment for kidney cancer?

Follow-up care after treatment for kidney cancer is important. Even when the cancer seems to have been completely removed or destroyed, the disease sometimes returns because cancer cells can remain hidden elsewhere in the body after treatment. The doctor monitors the recovery of the person treated for kidney cancer and checks for recurrence of cancer. Checkups help ensure that any changes in health are noted. The patient may have lab tests, chest X-rays, CT scans, or other tests.

Support for people with kidney cancer

Living with a serious disease such as kidney cancer is not easy. People with kidney cancer may worry about caring for their families, keeping their jobs, or continuing daily activities. Concerns about treatments and managing side effects, hospital stays, and medical bills are also common. Doctors, nurses, and other members of the health care team can answer questions about treatment, working, or other activities. Meeting with a social worker, counselor, or member of the clergy can be helpful to those who want to talk about their feelings or discuss their concerns. Often, a social worker can suggest resources for financial aid, transportation, home care, or emotional support.

Support groups also can help. In these groups, patients or their family members meet with other patients or their families to share what they have learned about coping with the disease and the effects of treatment. Groups may offer support in person, over the telephone, or on the Internet. Patients may want to talk with a member of their health care team about finding a support group.

The Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER can provide information to help patients and their families locate programs, services, and publications.

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