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What do you say instead? I am so sorry that you have to go through this. I know mastectomy can be very difficult. Believe it or not, remarks like this are intended to make cancer patients feel better. But for some BC patients, losing yet another aspect of their femininity, their individuality, and for some, their defining look, can be extremely difficult. Would you like to talk about the hair loss? You get a free boob job! What to say instead? What are your odds? What stage are you? Are you, like, dying? After a while, though, I stopped.

Tell me about your treatment plan. I can drive you.

A cancer diagnosis is life-changing. Here's how you can reclaim yourself. - Upworthy

Did you ever use deodorant? Forget to have kids?

Take birth control pills? You brought it on yourself.


Or simply wants to forward some pet theory no Gwyneth, bras do not cause cancer. The bottom line: breast cancer strikes women who are young and old; short and tall; thin and heavy; meat eaters and vegetarians; couch potatoes and athletes. Breast cancer even strikes men. I am so sorry to hear about your diagnosis and am here for you during treatment. Is Tuesday a good night to bring by dinner? Are you sure you have cancer? I saw pictures of you on Facebook and you looked fine to me.

This one is really horrible, especially for metastatic breast cancer patients who will be in treatment, and enduring its side effects, for the rest of their lives. Metastatic patients are terminal but commonly hear this because their lower-dose, long-term treatment may not cause hair loss.

Things Not To Say To Someone With Cancer

It may, however, cause nausea, severe bone pain, gastrointestinal issues, skin sloughing and constant fatigue, on top of whatever pain the cancer itself is causing. So a night out with friends might be followed by three days of bed rest a much less common Facebook share. How are you feeling this week? How about I come by on Saturday and clean your house? Get over it! You need to let go and just move on! Quit dwelling on it.

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Try to come into your appointments with an open mind, Oratz added. But of course, that can be difficult right after you get terrifying news. Both Spiegel and Oratz recommend bringing a loved one along to any appointments, especially when you get the results back from a biopsy. That person can provide emotional support, along with a second set of ears. When delivering the diagnosis herself, Oratz said she probably has to repeat herself five or six times until patients actually hear her, as a result of their emotional state.

Prevent: Keep it from coming back

There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a doctor or treatment center, such as accepted insurance plans and distance from your home. And, most importantly, you also want to find a doctor and cancer center that you feel comfortable with and trust. You have to have good chemistry and that has to go in both directions. Oratz suggested looking into treatment from a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center. There are 49 comprehensive cancer centers in total, located throughout the country. In addition to being handpicked by the NCI, they also offer the convenience of having one team of experts under the same roof.

But that might not be possible for everyone. She also noted that — for certain standard treatments — a comprehensive care center may not be necessary. To help you make your decision, the American Cancer Society offers a list of questions you can ask prospective providers and hospitals.

Here's the Deal

It can quickly become overwhelming, Oratz said. If the second doctor recommends the same treatment as the first, it can also help provide reassurance to patients. Sometimes, it helps to talk to someone who has experienced the same type of cancer, too. Try finding a system like the Cancer Hope Network, which offers free one-on-one emotional support to adults living with cancer and caregivers. The organization also matches patients with volunteers based on a shared diagnosis or a similar treatment protocol.

Most of the support visits happen by phone. Some matches may only talk once, while others choose to remain in touch throughout their treatment and beyond. In addition to emotional support, you may also need physical support, such as transportation. The American Cancer Society offers free rides to and from cancer-related appointments through its Road to Recovery program.

Based on eligibility and availability, patients get matched with volunteer drivers, transportation providers working with the ACS or other local resources. A cancer diagnosis can take you on a rollercoaster of emotions. Two days later, he had surgery to have the tumor removed, followed by chemotherapy the next week at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Nearly one month after Shipman finished chemotherapy, he recalls watching SportsCenter on ESPN and seeing a segment on Swarner, the two-time terminal cancer survivor, who had gone to the North Pole with a flag signed by thousands of cancer survivors.