Coping with soft tissue sarcoma | Cancer Research UK
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Coping with soft tissue sarcoma

It can be very difficult to cope with a diagnosis of cancer, both practically and emotionally. You are likely to feel very upset and confused. Having treatment can also be a difficult time for many people.

As well as coping with the fear and anxiety that a diagnosis of cancer brings, you have to work out how to manage practically. There may be money matters to sort out. Who do you tell that you have cancer? And how do you find the words?

The coping with cancer section contains lots of information you may find helpful, including information about who can help, counselling, financial issues, and much more.

As well as the support that should be available at your cancer treatment centre, there are support groups where you can discuss your feelings and fears with other people who are in a similar situation. Some of the sarcoma organisations can help you find a cancer support group near you.

 

CR PDF Icon You can view and print the quick guides for all the pages in the Living with soft tissue sarcoma cancer section.

 

 

Coping with your diagnosis

It can be very difficult to cope with a diagnosis of soft tissue sarcoma, both practically and emotionally. At first, you are likely to feel very upset, frightened and confused. Or you may feel that things are out of your control. It is very important to get the right information about your type of sarcoma and how it is best treated. People who are well informed about their illness and treatment are more able to make decisions and cope with what happens.

You can find out about sarcoma and treatment for sarcoma in this section of the website. You will have access to specialist cancer doctors and nurses. They can answer your questions.

 

How soft tissue sarcoma can affect you physically

Soft tissue sarcoma and its treatment may cause physical changes in your body. These changes can be very difficult to cope with and may affect the way you feel about yourself. Treatment for sarcoma may cause scarring. It can be especially difficult if you need to have a limb amputated. You will then need specialist rehabilitation to learn how to use a false limb (prosthesis). Such body changes can affect your self esteem and the way you relate to other people, especially close family and friends.

Another problem you may have to cope with is feeling very tired and lethargic a lot of the time, especially for a while after treatment or if the sarcoma is advanced. There is information about fatigue and cancer and treating cancer fatigue in the section about coping physically with cancer.

If you are having a sexual relationship, one or all of these changes may affect your sex life. There is information about how cancer can affect your sex life in the coping with cancer section.

 

Coping practically with soft tissue sarcoma

As well as coping with the fear and anxiety that a diagnosis of soft tissue sarcoma brings, you may also have to work out how to manage practically. There may be money matters to sort out. You may need information about financial support, such as benefits, sick pay and grants

Who do you tell that you have cancer? And how do you find the words? You may also have children to think about. We have  information about talking to people about your cancer and how and what to tell children.

Just try to remember that you don't have to sort everything out at once. It may take some time to deal with each issue. Do ask for help if you need it though. Your doctor or specialist nurse will know who you can contact. They can put you in touch with people specially trained in supporting those with cancer. These people are there to help and want you to feel that you have support. So use them if you feel you need to.

You may need to have access to support staff, such as physiotherapists and dieticians. Social workers can help you with information about your entitlement to sick pay and benefits. They may also be able to help you with arranging any adaptations to your home that you may need. If you live on your own, a social worker may be able to help by organising convalescence when you first come out of hospital.

 

More information about coping with soft tissue sarcoma

The coping with cancer section has lots of helpful information. There are sections about

If you would like more detailed information about coping with soft tissue sarcoma, contact our cancer information nurses. They would be happy to help.

You can also get in touch with the organisations on our sarcoma organisations list. They often have free factsheets and booklets they can send to you. They may also be able to put you in touch with a support group. There is also a soft tissue sarcoma reading list.

We have details of counselling organisations that can tell you more about counselling and help you find sources of emotional support in your area.

If you want to find people to share experiences with online, you could use CancerChat, our online forum. Or you can go through My Wavelength. This is a free service that aims to put people with similar medical conditions in touch with each other.

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Updated: 26 March 2015