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Resources and support

There are lots of organisations, support groups and helpful books to help you cope with symptoms and side effects caused by cancer and its treatment.

Cancer Research UK information and support

Cancer Research UK is the largest cancer research organisation in the world outside the USA. We fund research on all aspects of cancer from its causes to treatment and prevention.

We are committed to producing high quality information for people affected by cancer, health professionals and the general public. We also have a range of health awareness leaflets.

Nurse freephone helpline: 0808 800 4040, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
Admin phone number: 020 7242 0200

Cancer Chat is our online forum where you can share experiences.

General support and information organisations

General Medical Helpline: 020 8994 9874 (Mondays to Fridays, 6pm to 8pm)
Website: www.medicaladvisoryservice.org.uk
Email: office@medicaladvisoryservice.org.uk

The Medical Advisory Service offers information and advice on medical and health care matters.

For general health advice and information.

NHS 111 gives information if you need fast medical help but it's not a 999 emergency.

Phone: 111

Confidential telephone health advice and information service for people in Scotland.

NHS Helpline: 0800 22 44 88 (8am to 10pm – for details of pharmacies, GP practices and dentists in Scotland. Can also give information about illnesses, treatments and NHS services)

NHS 24 Helpline: 08454 24 24 24 (for when you are feeling ill and your doctor's surgery is closed)

Macmillan Cancer Support improves the lives of people affected by cancer. They provide practical, medical and financial support and push for better cancer care. They provide booklets on cancer and treatments and run a helpline providing cancer information and benefits advice.

Phone: 0808 808 0000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm – information available in other languages)
Textphone: 0808 808 0121

Specific symptoms organisations

A support group for anyone who suffers from chronic pain. They deliver self management training to help those with chronic pain.

Freephone: 0800 783 6059 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 4.30pm)
Email: info@painassociation.com

Provides support, advice and help in various ways to people affected by chronic pain and those close to them.

Tel: 01362 820750
PainLine 0845 6031593 (Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm)
Email: aopisat@btinternet.com

Offers information and support to people with pain and those who care for them. They run a helpline staffed by volunteers, and have an online forum called HealthUnlocked for members to share experiences. You can listen to podcasts which feature interviews with experts and people who are managing their pain. You can also subscribe to their magazine, Pain Matters.

Telephone: 0131 669 5951
Helpline: 0300 123 0789 (Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm)
Email: help@painconcern.org.uk

This organisation provides information and support for people who need artificial feeding. They also have regional support groups for PINNT members.

Organisations that can help with issues of sex and sexuality

Offers private and confidential counselling, and psychosexual therapy to help with relationship problems.

Telephone: 0300 100 1234

Provides information about the help and therapy available for sexual difficulties.

Telephone: 020 8543 2707
Email: info@cosrt.org.uk

Information on sexual problems. They provide lists of local specialist practitioners, as well as factsheets on problems such as erectile dysfunction (impotence).

Telephone 020 7486 7262 (Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 9am to 5pm)
Email: info@sexualadviceassociation.co.uk
 

Books about cancer

Everyone's Guide to Cancer Therapy (5th edition)
Andrew H Ko, Malin Dollinger and Ernest H Rosenbaum
Publishers: Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2008
ISBN: 978-0740768576
This book covers how cancer is diagnosed, treated, and managed day to day.

100 Questions and Answers About Cancer Symptoms and Cancer Treatment Side Effects (2nd edition)
Joanne Frankel Kelvin and Leslie B Tyson
Publishers: Jones and Bartlett Publishing, 2010
ISBN: 978-0763777609
An American book which gives both doctor’s and patient’s views on coping with the symptoms of cancer and the side effects of treatment. It has information about treatment for pain, nausea, tiredness, and other symptoms.

100 Questions and Answers About Caring for Family or Friends With Cancer (2nd edition)
Susannah Rose and Richard Hara
Publishers: Jones and Bartlett Publishing, 2009
ISBN: 978-0763762575
An American book which gives information about caring for someone with cancer, including how to support them when they have symptoms or side effects.

How to Eat Well When You Have Cancer
Jane Freeman
Sheldon Press, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-84709-141-3
Written by a cancer dietician, this is a practical nutritional handbook for people with cancer. Filled with helpful tips and recipes.

Complete Guide to Nutrition for Cancer Patients: Eating Well, Staying Well During and After Cancer (2nd edition)
Abby Bloch, Barbara Grant, Kathryn Hamilton and Cynthia Thomson
Publisher: American Cancer Society, 2009
ISBN: 978-0944235782
An American book, but most of the information is relevant to the UK. It covers issues such as preventing weight loss and coping with dehydration, fatigue, and infection. It also discusses eating problems and digestion issues, such as swallowing problems, feeling sick and dealing with mouth sores. Focuses on survivorship and how to eat well after treatment.

The Mindful Way Through Depression
Mark Williams, John Teasdale, Zindel Segal, and Jon Kabat-Zinn
Publisher: The Guilford Press, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-59385-128-6
An American book, but 2 of the authors are British researchers who are helping to promote mindfulness based cognitive therapy courses for people experiencing stress and depression in the UK. A CD of guided meditations is included with the book.

Lymphoedema: Advice on Self-management and Treatment
Peter Mortimer and Jacqueline Todd
Beaconsfield Publishers Ltd (2007)
ISBN-10: 0906584590

Sexual Health – The Practical Guide to Sexual Health and Enjoyment 
Dr Ian Banks
J H Haynes & Co Ltd, 2009
ISBN 1 844 258  084
Written by a doctor, this book includes information on health problems that may affect your sex life. Written with humour and compassion.

Relationships, Sex and Fertility for Young People Affected by Cancer
Macmillan Cancer Support
This booklet offers information to young people about all aspects of sex and relationships and discusses the effects of cancer treatment on fertility. It also has coping strategies and options for fertility treatment in people whose fertility is affected.
Available free to people affected by cancer from Macmillan Cancer Support by calling 0808 500 800.

Sexuality and Intimacy for Cancer Patients and Their Partners
Sexual Advice Association
This booklet aims to help cancer patients and their partners understand sexual difficulties that may happen after cancer and ways of overcoming them. Available on the Sexual Advice Association website.

Intimacy After Cancer – A Woman’s Guide
Dr Sally Kydd and Dana Rowett
Big Think Media, 2006
ISBN 0 9788108 0 5
This American book has information about sexuality after a diagnosis of cancer and its treatment. It includes information about how you may feel and offers some helpful solutions in maintaining or regaining intimate relationships. As an American book it is only available from online book suppliers.

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Information and help

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