Survivorship Clinic Visits
As you finish cancer treatment, you might be wondering: What happens next? The answer is different for everyone. We're here for every survivor – to help you to return to everyday life while adjusting to the effects of cancer and its treatment.
What is a Survivorship Clinic visit?
A Survivorship Clinic visit is when you meet with a cancer nurse practitioner after completing treatment for cancer. As a cancer survivor, you may face physical, psychosocial and practical impacts from cancer and its treatment. A Survivorship Clinic visit will give you information and tools to help you after cancer treatment has ended.
Why is it important?
Cancer and its treatment may result in long-lasting or late-onset effects. Our Survivorship Clinic nurse practitioners learn about your treatment history and provide specific recommendations to minimize effects from your cancer and treatment, while helping you decrease the risk of cancer coming back.
What can I expect during my visit?
Your Survivorship Clinic visit is typically scheduled 5-7 weeks after completing treatment, but it can be scheduled up to a year after your diagnosis. It isn't intended to replace the regular follow-up visits with your cancer practitioner for ongoing monitoring and care.
During your visit, your cancer practitioner will:
- Review your cancer history, including the type of cancer you had and the treatment(s) you completed. This could include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, etc.
- Discuss any ongoing treatment for your cancer.
- Help you learn about any potential long-term or late effects of your treatment. Many people expect to experience side effects during treatment. It's often surprising to survivors that some side effects may linger after treatment or that other side effects may develop even months or years later.
- Discuss possible psychological affects (relationships, sexual functioning, work and parenting) and the potential need for psychological support.
- Discuss possible insurance, employment, and financial consequences, as well as referrals to appropriate counseling as necessary.
- Provide recommendations for follow-up care, which may include check-ups and/or medical tests to watch for any signs of your cancer returning or any new cancer appearing.
- Help you enjoy life by learning about healthy habits and behaviors that can help you regain or build strength, reduce side effects, reduce the risks of cancer coming back or developing new cancer.
- Provide you with recommendations for cancer-related resources.
In addition, you may be referred to other specialists or services based on treatment effects you're experiencing. This could include:
- Physical/occupational therapy for rehabilitation or neuropathy
- Lymphedema therapist
- Pelvic floor health therapist
- Sexual health counselor or gynecology/urology for sexual dysfunction
- Social worker
- Mental health counseling
- Cardiology consult
- Genetic counseling/testing
Survivorship Care Plan
A summary of your Survivorship Clinic visit and any recommendations made will be provided to you in a Survivorship Care Plan. This plan is individualized to you and will also be shared with your health care team, including the doctors that were part of your cancer care and your primary care doctor.
The Survivorship Clinic is one of the services offered by the Community Cancer Center. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, call us at (319) 233-2701.