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Information about all aspects of finances affected by a serious health condition. Includes income sources such as work, investments, and private and government disability programs, and expenses such as medical bills, and how to deal with financial problems.
Information about all aspects of health care from choosing a doctor and treatment, staying safe in a hospital, to end of life care. Includes how to obtain, choose and maximize health insurance policies.
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Everyone who has gone through prostate cancer treatment should have a Cancer Follow Up Plan, no matter how limited treatment may have been.

A Cancer Follow Up Plan describes your condition and treatments, as well as vulnerabilities to watch for after the end of treatment. For instance, if a side effect of a treatment is increased risk for a heart attack, the Plan would tell you to eat heart healthy and what symptoms to watch for.

Use your Plan as a guide for symptoms that should trigger action (generally to call your doctor), as well as preventive measures to take about conditions for which you may be more prone than the general population.

Give a copy of your Cancer Follow Up Plan to your primary care doctor (yes, you still have to see a primary care doctor for your overall health) and any other doctors you see. They are not cancer specialists and may not know everything to watch for because of your condition and/or treatment.

Even with a Cancer Follow Up Plan, a primary care doctor may miss signs that would be meaningful to an oncologist or other specialist. For safety, keep your specialist informed about any changes in your health. You don't have to set an appointment. You can correspond by e mail, fax or snail mail.

If you are no longer seeing the specialist, the doctor will let  you know if she or he no longer wants to hear from you. If this happens, consider engaging another specialist who will agree to receive your updates. The document in "To Learn More" about choosing a specialist links to an interactive chart to help you choose the best specialist for your needs.


Purpose Of A Cancer Follow Up Plan

The idea of the plan is to give women who have gone through breast cancer treatment information to:

  • Spot side effects that may occur long after treatment.
  • Watch for early signs of a cancer recurrence.
  • Watch for the appearance of a new cancer.
  • Watch for after effects of treatments.
  • Inform doctors who are not specialists in a particular disease about symptoms to watch for.

What A Cancer Follow Up Plan Should Include

A cancer follow up plan should include each of the following:

  1. The medical name of your diagnosis. (Ideally, a hard copy of your diagnosis will be attached, though this is not necessary.)
  2. All treatments you received, including:
    • The medical name
    • Dates
    • Dosage
    • Other pertinent facts
  3. What signs or symptoms to watch for in the future.
  4. Which doctor(s) to call if any of the subject signs or symptoms appear.
  5. What the lasting effects of your treatment(s) could be. If you know what could happen as a result of your cancer and/or treatment, you can take steps to help reduce the possibility they may happen. For instance, if you had a type of chemotherapy that could result in a heart condition in years to come, you would know to start living heart wisely - such as doing aerobic or other exercise and eating a heart friendly diet.

You can see a template for a Prostate Cancer follow-up Plan at the website of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists (ASCO) at  offsite link Search for "Prostate Cancer Survivorship Plan."