After Your Treatment

Although your radiation treatment is over, we know that your cancer experience continues.

You may be all done treatments and curious about your follow up. Or you may be moving onto additional treatment, such as surgery, chemotherapy, or adjuvant therapy. Let’s talk about:

  • Following up with your care team
  • Your transition to a “new normal”
  • Accessing support and resources

Following Up with Your Care Team

When your radiation therapy is complete, you will meet with your radiation oncologist for follow-up.

Your next steps may include:

  • Meeting with other care teams for additional treatment, if needed
  • Watching for side effects that can develop after treatment

Follow up appointments

  • If appropriate, you will meet with your doctor 1-3 months after you complete your radiation treatment course.
  • Your radiation oncologist may ask you to have another scan (CT, PET, or MRI) before the follow-up appointment.
  • Your doctor will ask you how you are doing, assess your progress, and offer additional care and guidance.

Managing Side Effects

  • If you experience side effects from your radiation therapy, be sure to tell your care team.
  • Sometimes, the side effects go away when your treatment is finished.
  • If not, we can provide prescription medications or other recommendations to help you manage your side effects.

Your Transition to a “New” Normal

In most ways you are the same person you were before your cancer diagnosis and treatment. But the experience may have changed you, however subtly, both physically and emotionally.

This experience may have affected the way you view yourself, your health, your beliefs and values. These may all impact how you return to “normal” life.

Changing Relationships

Those Close to You:

  • As you know, cancer doesn’t just affect you, it affects your family and friends and caregivers too. Their experience is shaped by their own personality, values, beliefs, and relationship with you.
  • During and after treatment you may find that your relationships may have evolved.

Your Care Team:

  • At the same time, your care team – the people who have been with you throughout the experience – are no longer part of your daily routine.
  • As much as you may feel relieved that your treatment is over, you may also experience some surprising feelings of loss for those care team members whom you have gotten to know so well.

How We Can Help

Even though your care team will not be seeing you every day, your well-being and recovery are still a priority. Stanford Health Care is here to help you manage the effects of cancer on your life and the lives of those close to you now and into the future.

  • We offer many services to help you manage whatever spiritual, emotional, or social challenges you and your loved ones may face next. Learn more about each service in the Stanford Resources section of this online program.
  • Your care team is also a great place to start. They can put you in touch with social workers who can connect you with a variety of post-treatment programs and support.