Living with Lymphoma

How to Cope with Issues During and After Lymphoma Treatment

Dan O'Donnell, age 59, of Simi Valley is being treated for Lymphoma of the colon and liver. Credit: Anne Cusack / Contributor / Getty Images

When you are diagnosed with lymphoma, life is more than just getting the tests done and deciding on treatment. Through the course of treatment and years beyond that, hundreds of issues come and go. These include coping with immediate and late side-effects of treatment, understanding concepts of disease response, remission and relapse, arranging for finances to fund treatment, and looking for support from your family and from other lymphoma survivors. These issues need to be understood and tackled with as much promptness as the diagnosis and treatment.

Issues During Lymphoma Treatment

Treatment of lymphoma can be long and complicated. Each of the different types of treatment – chemotherapy, radiation, antibodies and stem cell transplantation - can give rise to its own issues and complications. Here is a discussion of some of the questions and problems faced during treatment.

Financial Support for Cancer Patients

Cancer treatment can be very expensive. Some treatments and drugs that are required may not be covered by insurance or government grants. How can you be better prepared to tackle financial issues?

Understanding Treatment Response and Survival

Once treatment is complete, doctors will ask for a set of investigations to assess the response to treatment. If all disease seems to have disappeared, you are said to have had a complete response, and you are in remission. If the disease comes back later it is called a relapse. Your doctor might explain the chances of disease control with the help of some survival terms.

Issues after Lymphoma Treatment

If you win your initial battle with the disease, a number of other issues become important as the years go by. Cancer itself and its treatments have long-term effects. Here are some of the common problems that lymphoma survivors have to deal with in the years after lymphoma treatment.

You are Not Alone

It is important to realize that the battle against cancer does not have to be fought alone. Family members and loved ones can provide support to the affected individual. Many problems during treatment and beyond require emotional support. The internet provides an excellent opportunity to interact with others suffering from the same disease, and to learn from their experiences.

With all of these resources, you can be prepared for what you may experience during and after your treatment for lymphoma. Don't become your disease, continue to enjoy your relationships, work, hobbies and recreation activities, living life.

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