Creating a Survivor's “Road Map” for Life

Roswell Park
Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - 3:11pm

When cancer patients finish treatment, they enter a new phase: learning how to live after cancer. When you ring Roswell Park's victory bell, or hang your bell on the Bridge of Hope, life does not necessarily return to normal. You must adjust to managing the long-term effects of treatment to ensure a healthy, happy and active life. 

RPCI’s new Survivorship Center opens in the Clinical Sciences Center (CSC) next fall and will help address these needs in a centralized location. From then on, everyone who has graduated from active treatment may be seen in a specialized clinic where services are geared to the unique needs of survivors. 

Why is Post-Treatment Care Necessary?

“Support services are really important,” says Mary Reid, MSPH, PhD, Director of Cancer Screening and Survivorship. “Every colon cancer patient has nutritional problems. Lung cancer patients may need extra help to improve their breathing or stop smoking. Some people may have questions about physical recovery after surgery. And adolescent and young adult survivors may want information about issues related to long-term risks associated with their treatment, including infertility or problems with sexual function."

The new Survivorship Center will provide survivors with ongoing cancer surveillance and complementary therapies including:

  • Outpatient physical therapy and rehabilitation (including treatment for lymphedema)
  • Yoga classes, guided meditation, acupuncture/acupressure, and massage to promote physical and emotional health and relieve any treatment side effects
  • Nutritional programs and therapies, and cooking classes focused on healthy eating, presented in a brand-new kitchen studio 

As we continue to build and expand our Survivorship Center, there are several resources and services available to help you navigate life after treatment. Speak to your care team about the best options for you, or call 1-877-ASK-RPCI (1-877-275-7724).