Living with cancer blog

Survivorship class offers support as cancer treatment ends

By Sheryl M. Ness, R.N. December 31, 2011

Beginning in January, Mayo Clinic Cancer Center will offer its first class designed to support cancer patients with a focus on moving forward after cancer treatment.

The class is designed to help:

  • Learn tips for promoting a healthy lifestyle after treatment
  • Discuss techniques for managing difficult emotions
  • Identify potential long term or late effects of cancer treatment
  • Understand the importance of becoming an active participant in your follow-up care

As you complete treatment, you may be excited to finally be done. But you may have some fears, thinking — what's next? You've had support from your medical care team and others you've met along the way during diagnosis and treatment.

However, as you transition back to your "life routine", you may be surprised by the uneasy feelings that can come with the next phase of your survivorship and feel that your support is gone.

The survivorship class addresses:

  • Defining a "new sense of normal"
  • Bridging the disconnect between your feelings and the expectations from others (family, friends, co-workers)
  • Incorporating wellness activities into your daily routine
  • Potential late side effects from treatment
  • Dealing with fragile emotions, living with uncertainty and addressing the fear of recurrence
  • Finding your way back to work/life balance

The class is free and offered every Wednesday (beginning Jan. 11, 2012) from 1:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. in the Cancer Education Center, Gonda Building (Lobby level). Please join us in person if you are close to the Rochester, Minn., campus. I would love to hear about any experiences you have had with survivorship classes in your area.

Follow me on Twitter @SherylNess1. Join the discussion at #livingwithcancer.

With

Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.

Follow on Twitter: @SherylNess1

Dec. 31, 2011