June 2, 2016

Cancer Survivors’ Day June 5

Recent Canadian cancer statistics are both sad and shocking. Although improvements have been made in diagnosis and treatment, 2015 cancer data from the Canadian Cancer Society shows that cancer is the leading cause of death. Two out of every five Canadians will develop some form of cancer—currently almost 200 000 new cases annually— and ¼ of those diagnosed will die. But that means about ¾ of those who get cancer survive, and research is making strides towards improving those numbers.

Having cancer can change many aspects of a person’s life, and surviving the disease brings many issues with it. These are two common definitions of cancer survivorship:
• being cancer-free after treatment is complete and
• “living with, through and beyond cancer” (Cancer.Net), which begins with diagnosis.

Sometimes, survivors consider their family and friends “co-survivors” because of the many ways in which cancer affects the people around the patient too. No matter the definition, the experience of surviving cancer is different for everyone; however, many survivors are affected by common issues and concerns, which can include the following.
• lingering physical problems from the after-effects of treatment
• emotional concerns such as anxiety about the future and fear of recurrence
• changes in social or collegial relationships

To learn more about the issues that affect cancer survivors, click here for the Cancer.Net About Survivorship page.

For more posts like these, visit the Physical Wellness page.