A diagnosis of Hurthle cell cancer can be challenging and frightening. Even when a full recovery is likely, you may worry about a recurrence of the disease. But no matter what your concerns or prognosis, you're not alone. Here are some strategies and resources that may make dealing with this cancer easier:
Jan. 25, 2012
- Know enough to make decisions about your care. Find out enough about your condition in order to feel comfortable making treatment decisions. Ask your doctor about your cancer, as well as your treatment options and their side effects. The more you know, the more confident you'll be when it comes to making decisions about your care. Look for information in your local library and on reliable websites. Start with the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society.
- Maintain a strong support system. Friends and family can be your best allies as you face cancer. They often want to help, so take them up on offers to make meals or provide transportation. Sometimes the concern and understanding of a formal support group of cancer survivors can offer a unique type of emotional support and encouragement. You may also find you develop deep and lasting bonds with people who are going through the same things you are. There are also support groups for the families of cancer survivors.
- Set reasonable goals. Having goals helps you feel in control and can give you a sense of purpose. But don't choose goals you can't possibly reach. You may not be able to work full time, for example, but you may be able to work at least half time. In fact, many people find that continuing to work can be helpful.
- Take time for yourself. Eating well, relaxing and getting enough rest can help combat the stress and fatigue of cancer. Also, plan ahead for the downtimes when you may need to rest more or limit what you do.
- Lai SY, et al. Management of thyroid neoplasms. In: Flint PW, et al. Cummings Otolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05283-2..X0001-8--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05283-2&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Dec. 28, 2011.
- Revised American Thyroid Association management guidelines for patients with thyroid nodules and differentiated thyroid cancer. Falls Church, Va.: American Thyroid Association. http://thyroidguidelines.net/revised/taskforce. Accessed Dec. 28, 2011.
- Thyroid carcinoma. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Dec. 28, 2011.
- What you need to know about thyroid cancer. National Cancer Institute. http://cancer.gov/cancertopics/wyntk/thyroid. Accessed Dec. 28, 2011.