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Helpful Hints for Breast Cancer Patients

Resources of the Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre
  • Bring a family member or friend with you to your appointments.
  • Make notes before, during and/or after your appointments. Mark down information such as the date and reason for your visit as this may be useful for filling in insurance and government forms. Write down any questions you might like to ask your health care professional and note any information that you feel may be helpful.
  • Call your local Canadian Cancer Society to find out what services are available to you. Visit the Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre Resource Centre and get information regarding your diagnosis, treatment and what support groups or events are available in your community.
  • Let your family or cancer doctor know how much information you would like from them. They will provide you with as much information as you require, and should you have difficulty in understanding, please let them know. You may find it helpful if your doctor draws you a diagram or shows you your x-rays.
  • In order to help your family and friends as well as yourself during your illness, let them know what activities or other things you would like them to do. For example, you may need assistance in shopping or preparing meals, transportation to and from your appointments or assistance with child care. When someone asks if there is anything they can do for you, look at your list. This will help you both.
  • You may wish to borrow, rent or purchase an answering machine. This will allow you to rest without interruptions, but also to keep in touch when it's best for you.
  • Clarify with your health care professional who you should contact if you are having difficulties. This will vary depending on the time of day or day of the week. Write down the telephone numbers to call during regular office hours and after hours.

If you are having difficulty emotionally, financially, at work or with your family and/or friends, there are many people on your health care team who can help. Speak to your oncology nurse, social worker or psychiatrist about these problems. They are here to help you. If you have not yet met with any of these team members, tell your doctor and they can arrange an appointment for you.