Breast cancer supportive therapy and survivorship
Medically reviewed on Dec 29, 2017
Breast cancer supportive therapy and survivorship services are offered during and after breast cancer treatment to help you feel better.
Breast cancer supportive therapy includes a wide variety of services to manage issues surrounding a cancer diagnosis, as well as the physical and emotional side effects of cancer treatment.
Your breast cancer survivorship services may include:
- Follow-up tests to look for signs of cancer recurrence or complications of cancer treatment
- Appointments or other resources to manage lingering side effects of cancer treatment
Your specific needs during breast cancer treatment will determine the types of supportive therapy or survivorship services that may be helpful to you.
Why it's done
The goal of breast cancer supportive therapy and survivorship services is to help you feel better during and after cancer treatment.
If symptoms such as pain and distress are under control, you may be more likely to be able to complete your treatments. And having a plan for your care after cancer treatment can help you focus on recovery and healing so that you can return to the activities you enjoyed before your cancer diagnosis.
Your breast cancer supportive therapy might include attention to:
- Symptom control, such as management of pain and menopausal symptoms
- Emotional concerns, such as sadness and distress
- Other health problems that might complicate cancer treatment, such as heart disease
- Therapy to aid recovery after treatment, such as physical therapy for arm swelling or shoulder stiffness after surgery, radiation therapy, or both
Your breast cancer survivorship services might include:
- Follow-up appointments with your health care provider
- Discussion of the signs and symptoms that might indicate a cancer recurrence or complications from therapy
- Continuing treatment for physical or emotional concerns that continue after treatment ends
- Recommendations for lifestyle changes, such as exercise and weight loss, to help your recovery and reduce your risk of cancer recurrence