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Professional Support Team Information

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Building Your Professional Support Team

Most cancer patients have a treatment team of health providers who work together to help them. In addition to doctors and nurses, this team may include social workers, pharmacists, dietitians, and other people in health care. Chances are that you will never see all these people at the same time. In fact, there may be health providers on your team who you never meet.

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First Descents: Outdoor Adventures for Young Adults with Cancer

by Whitney Lange, Director of Programs

Kevin Lebret-White was 36 years old when he received the devastating news. Then he learned about First Descents and its programs geared toward helping young adults with cancer, like himself, regain a sense of control over their lives.

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Oncology Social Work 101

by Maryanne Tierney, LCSW

Cancer diagnosis and treatment affects a person’s physical, psychological, social, and functional status. The diagnosis can cause a variety of emotions: fear, pain, stress, a loss of freedom. The oncology social worker can ensure that survivors receive appropriate services with the hope that many will experience improvement in functional ability, health status, and quality of life.

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What Can a Patient Navigator Do for You?

by Brenda Wilcox, RN, BSN, OCN

A sea of questions without answers. A flood of seemingly endless information. A maze of medical confusion. In an instant, a cancer diagnosis can turn your world upside down. When the crisis is at its worst, it is the gentle, calming reassurance of the patient navigator that comes alongside to offer guidance and support to those in need at a time when fear and confusion can blind the way.

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Palliative Care

by Ana Maria Lopez, MD, MPH, FACP, and Charlotte Alster

The concept of palliative care was introduced in the United States in the 1970s. At that time, palliative care was intimately connected to hospice care with its focus on symptom management at the end of life. Today, palliative care has expanded to address the symptom management needs of all people with cancer – even those receiving curative treatment in the acute setting.

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Oncology Social Workers

by Hester Hill Schnipper, LICSW, OSW-C

Almost all people with cancer are treated by a team of healthcare providers: physicians, nurses, and other specialists who work together to provide often complex medical care. Oncology social workers are integral members of many multidisciplinary oncology teams. They are recognized as leading experts in providing psychosocial care to people affected by cancer and their families.

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Talking to Your Doctor about Cancer-Related Symptoms

by Charles S. Cleeland, PhD, with Diana Lazzell

You’re reading this article before your regular clinic appointment. You’re not feeling well today – the pain has been getting worse, and the overwhelming fatigue is really getting you down. You think about mentioning these symptoms to your doctor, but you hesitate.

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Questions to Ask Your Doctor

  • Which chemotherapy would you recommend for me and why?
  • Are there other treatment options I should consider?
  • How many treatments will I receive?
  • How long will each treatment take?
  • What types of side effects should I know about?
  • What are the signs of a serious side effect?
  • When can I call you?

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