Close this search box.
Understanding Survivor’s Challenges

National Cancer Survivor Day is a day dedicated to honoring and supporting cancer survivors and their ongoing challenges. This is a time to celebrate life and acknowledge the strength and resilience of those who have battled cancer. This day serves as a reminder of the healthcare professionals who are dedicated to further research efforts, support, and awareness to improve the lives of cancer survivors.

Cancer survivors unfortunately face many burdens after treatment, including:

  • Emotional: Unfortunately, emotional burdens don’t end after treatment. Cancer survivors may experience depression anxiety, and fear of recurrence, which can negatively impact their mental health.
  • Financial: Cancer survivors often face financial difficulties due to the cost of treatment, and the impact of cancer on their ability to work.
  • Physical: Survivors deal with ongoing issues like fatigue, pain, and other long-term side effects of treatment. These can have an impact on daily life and activities, affecting overall well-being.

Although these issues can be difficult and sometimes debilitating, it’s important to know about the resources that are available to help cancer survivors post-treatment.

  • Counseling: Professional counseling or therapy helps cancer survivors with the emotional toll of treatment. Therapists can help to alleviate feelings of depression and anxiety, empowering survivors’ mental health.
  • Nutritional Guidance: Good nutrition is foundational to good health, and paying attention to what gets put into your body is an important step in recovery. Nutritional guidance includes strategies on how to manage symptoms like nausea and fatigue, as well as advice on how to support immune function, energy levels, and overall recovery.
  • Physical Therapy: Survivors dealing with lasting side effects from treatment can benefit from rehabilitation efforts that are tailored to their specific needs. Meeting with a physical therapist can improve strength and decrease pain, encouraging survivors to regain their quality of life.
  • Support Groups: Connecting with others who are in a similar situation can offer invaluable emotional support. Sharing experiences and exchanging perspectives promotes a sense of community and belonging.

Asking questions during follow-up visits with your doctor after receiving cancer treatment is important for your understanding and ongoing care. Here are some good questions to consider asking:

  • Are there any specific symptoms I should watch out for that might indicate a problem?
  • What tests or screenings will I need in the future to monitor for any recurrence or complications?
  • Are there any complementary or alternative therapies that might help improve my quality of life?
  • What resources are available to help me navigate survivorship and adjust to life after cancer treatment?

Meet Southwest Health’s Center for Cancer Care provider:

Michele Pipp-Dahm, MD:  Dr. Pipp-Dahm is a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. She also practices at the Carbone Cancer Center in Madison. At the Center for Cancer Care at Southwest Health in Platteville, she provides a wide range of chemotherapy, oncology, and hematology services. Getting to know her patients in order to help her provide care that aligns with their beliefs and wishes is very important to Dr. Pipp-Dahm. She encourages open dialogue in order to make sure her patients fully understand their diagnosis as well as their treatment options.

Learn More from Southwest Health

Because the way we see it, lifelong learning is a beautiful thing. No matter what your age and ability, we’re here for you to help you learn and grow and thrive.