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Prostate Cancer

  • Posted: 09/26/2012

Sources of Support

Learning that you have prostate cancer can change your life and the lives of those close to you. These changes can be hard to handle. It’s normal for you, your  family, and your friends to need help coping with the feelings that a diagnosis of cancer can bring.

Concerns about treatments and managing side effects, hospital stays, and medical bills are common. You may also worry about caring for your family, keeping your job, or continuing daily activities.

Here’s where you can go for support:

  • Doctors, nurses, and other members of your health care team can answer questions about treatment, working, or other activities.
  • Social workers, counselors, or members of the clergy can be helpful if you want to talk about your feelings or concerns. Often, social workers can suggest resources for financial aid, transportation, home care, or emotional support.
  • Support groups can also help. In these groups, men with prostate cancer or their family members meet with other patients or their families to share what they have learned about coping with the disease and the effects of treatment. Groups may offer support in person, over the telephone, or on the Internet. You may want to talk with a member of your health care team about finding a support group.
  • NCI’s Cancer Information Service can help you locate programs, services, and NCI publications. Call 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237). Or, chat using LiveHelp (https://livehelp.cancer.gov), NCI’s instant messaging service.
  • Your doctor or a sex counselor may be helpful if you and your partner are concerned about the effects of prostate cancer on your sex life. Ask your doctor about possible treatment of side effects and whether these side effects are likely to last. Whatever the outlook, you and your partner may find it helps to discuss your concerns.

For tips on coping, you may want to read the NCI booklet Taking Time: Support for People With Cancer.