Follow up for gallbladder cancer | Cancer Research UK
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Follow up for gallbladder cancer

Men and women discussing gallbladder cancer

This page tells you about follow up appointments for gallbladder cancer.

 

A quick guide to what's on this page

What happens during check ups

After your treatment has finished, your doctor will want you to have regular check ups. At check ups, your doctor may examine you. Your doctor will also ask how you are feeling and whether you have had any symptoms or are worried about anything. At some visits, you may have blood tests, X-rays, or scans.

If you are having difficulty with your diet then you may want to come back to the hospital to see a dietician. You can arrange this through your specialist or nurse when you attend the outpatients’ clinic.

Worrying about your appointments

Many people find their check ups quite worrying. If you are feeling well and getting on with life, a hospital appointment can bring all the worry about your cancer back to you. You may find it helpful to tell someone close to you how you are feeling. If you are worried or notice any new symptoms between appointments, tell your doctor as soon as possible. You don’t have to wait until your next appointment. It is quite common nowadays for people to have counselling after cancer treatment.

 

CR PDF Icon View a summary of treating gallbladder cancer.

 

What happens during check ups

After your treatment has finished, your doctor will want you to have regular check ups. These may include

You will not have all of these tests at every visit to your specialist. But you will probably be examined at each appointment. Your doctor will also ask how you are feeling and whether you have any symptoms or are worried about anything.

If you have had surgery to try to cure your gallbladder cancer, your surgeon may organise regular CT or MRI scans to try to pick up any signs of the cancer coming back as early as possible.

If you had a more advanced gallbladder cancer, your doctor may only arrange a scan if you have any new symptoms, or if there is any other cause for concern. Generally, if everything is going well, you will not have follow up scans because they are unlikely to give any new information to you or your doctor.

 

Help with diet

If you are having difficulty with your diet then you may want to come back to the hospital to see a dietician. You can arrange this through your specialist or nurse when you attend the outpatients’ clinic. If you have a check up coming up and would like to see a dietician at the same time, you could telephone the clinic or your specialist’s secretary to ask them to arrange it for you.

 

How often you'll have check ups

At first, your check ups will be every few weeks or months. But if you are well, they will gradually become less and less frequent. If you are worried or notice any new symptoms between appointments, you must let your doctor know as soon as possible. You don’t have to wait until your next appointment.

If you are having symptoms due to advanced cancer you will see your doctor or nurse regularly. They will check how you are coping generally, and see how well the treatments for your symptoms are working.

 

Worrying about appointments

Many people find their check ups quite worrying. If you are feeling well and getting on with life, a hospital appointment can bring all the worry about your cancer back to you. You may find it helpful to tell someone close to you how you are feeling. If you are able to share your worries, they may not seem quite so bad.

It is quite common nowadays for people to have counselling after cancer treatment. To find out about counselling, look in our coping with cancer section.

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Updated: 19 June 2014