Rectal Cancer

Living with Rectal Cancer

Living with a serious disease such as rectal cancer is not easy. People living with rectal cancer may worry about caring for their families, keeping their jobs, or continuing daily activities. Concerns about rectal cancer 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 for those living with rectal cancer.

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 rectal cancer 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 rectal cancer support group.

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