After completion of radiotherapy treatment for mesothelioma you will still need regular doctor visits to check your progress after your radiation therapy ends. You may also need help to deal with any problems that may come up.
This phase of your treatment is called follow-up care. Your follow-up care will include checking the results of your treatment, but it may also involve more cancer treatment, rehabilitation, and counseling. It may include appointments with your original doctor, surgeon, medical oncologist (a doctor specially trained to treat patients with chemotherapy), and your radiation oncologist.
These are some steps you will need to take care of yourself after radiotherapy:
- If you have skin problems after your treatment ends, be gentle with skin in the treatment area until all signs of irritation are gone. You may need extra rest while your healthy tissues are rebuilding. You may need to limit your activities to conserve your energy and not try to go back to your regular schedule right away.
-If you are still experiencing pain after radiotherapy, unless directed by your doctor, do not use a heating pad or warm compress to relieve pain in any area treated with radiation. Talk to your doctor or nurse and describe the location and type of pain in as much detail as possible. Allow your health team to help you manage this pain effectively.
-After treatment, you are likely to be more aware of your body and any slight changes in how you feel from day to day. If you have any of the problems listed below, tell your doctor at once:
• pain that does not go away, especially if it is always in the same place
• lumps, bumps, or swelling
• nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, or trouble swallowing
• unexplained weight loss
• fever or cough that doesn't go away
• unusual rashes, bruises, or bleeding
• any other signs mentioned by your doctor or nurse
Do not hesitate to let your doctor know about any new problems or concerns you have. It is always best to find out the cause of a problem so it can be dealt with right away.
-You will want to get copies of your treatment records to keep. It is important that you be able to give any new doctor you might see in the future the exact details of your diagnosis and treatment, also these documents might become very relevant to your case if you are about to pursue a mesothelioma lawsuit to get compensated for damages . Make sure you have the following information handy:
• a copy of your pathology report from any biopsy or surgery
• if you had surgery, a copy of your operative report
• if you had radiation therapy, a copy of your treatment summary
• if you were hospitalized, a copy of the discharge summary that every doctor must prepare when patients are sent home from the hospital