Cancer Prevention and Wellbeing
We understand that if you have experienced cancer you may be concerned that your previous cancer will come back, that you may develop a different cancer because of the treatments that you have had, or that genetic factors may increase your risk of developing cancer generally.
Cancer recurrence may take the form of your cancer coming back in the same place (called a loco-regional recurrence) or in a different part of your body (metastatic disease). The timing and patterns of a cancer recurring, particularly of distant disease, vary by cancer type and stage at diagnosis. In most instances, testing to look for recurrent or metastatic disease isn’t recommended if you don’t have any signs of anything that is abnormal for you, but it understandably is something that can cause worry and anxiety.
The fact that you also have an increased risk of developing a different type of cancer (secondary cancer) due to some of the treatments you may have had (such as chemotherapy or radiation) can add to this worry. It’s important to recognise the part that your lifestyle choices, such as smoking, alcohol, diet and being inactive can have on decreasing your risk of developing the same or a different cancer.
The national survivorship initiative found that, “there is now persuasive evidence that a healthy lifestyle during and after cancer is associated with improved physical and psychological well-being, reduced risks of treatment, enhanced self-esteem, reduced risk of recurrence, and improved survival.”
This section is specifically designed to give you the practical skills to make positive lifestyle choices that contribute to your health and preventing a cancer recurrence, taking into account your cancer journey thus far, but also contribute to your general wellbeing enabling you to thrive.