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Coping with testicular cancer

It can be very difficult coping with a diagnosis of cancer, both practically and emotionally. You may feel very upset and confused at first. 

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 you have cancer? There may be children to consider. 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. 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. 

Testicular cancer organisations can help you find sources of emotional support and counselling in your area. There are also now web based forums, such as CancerChat, where you can get in touch with other people who've been diagnosed with testicular cancer. Our coping with cancer section contains lots of information you may find helpful. There are sections about

  • Your feelings
  • Telling people about your cancer
  • Getting help and helping yourself
  • Sex and sexuality
  • Practical issues such as financial support, benefits and sick pay.

 

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

 

 

Coping with your diagnosis

It can be very difficult coping with a diagnosis of testicular cancer, 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 cancer 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.

 

How testicular cancer may affect you physically

Testicular cancer 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. Surgery may cause scarring and you may have pain in the area for some weeks afterwards. 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 for a while if you need to have chemotherapy or radiotherapy. There is information about fatigue and cancer and treating cancer fatigue in the section on 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 testicular cancer

As well as coping with the fear and anxiety that a diagnosis of cancer 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 to get some help and 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 a physiotherapist or dietician. Social workers can help you with information about your entitlement to sick pay and benefits.

 

More information on coping with testicular cancer

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

If you would like more detailed information about coping with testicular cancer, you can contact our cancer information nurses. They would be happy to help. Or you could contact one of the organisations on our testicular cancer 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 are also web based forums for exchanging experiences. Look at Cancer Chat – Cancer Research UK's online discussion forum.We also have a testicular cancer reading list.

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

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Updated: 22 February 2013