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What To Expect As You Begin Treatment For Breast Cancer

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Updated September 18, 2010

Knowing what to expect before you go into treatment for breast cancer helps you feel in control of your life. Your treatments will have an impact on your body, but also on your budget, your schedule, your job, family life, and your relationships.  Let's walk through this together – when you're prepared for the journey, it will be easier to manage.

Breast Cancer Changes Your Life:

No matter what your treatment plan may be, going through treatment for breast cancer will change your life.  You know that your body will be different, but be prepared for emotional challenges, fertility frustrations, and a shift in your relationships.  Here's a good summary of some changes to prepare for, and ways to cope.

Paying For Breast Cancer Treatment:

Cancer treatments are expensive and your costs can add up quickly. You can get help paying for breast cancer treatment from your health insurance provider, Medicare, Medicaid, or other financial assistance programs. Find out who to ask for financial help, how to prepare for meeting the cost of treatment, and what possible non-medical expenses may arise.

Here's a couple of examples of treatment costs:

Breast Cancer Treatment And Recovery Times:

Taking treatment for breast cancer can take as much time as a part-time job. Your calendar will become full of consultations, checkups, treatments, and follow-ups. Remember to allow time for recovery from surgery and treatment. If you work outside the home, learn how to balance the demands of work, treatment, and home. Here are some average time for treatments and recovery.

How To Talk About Your Diagnosis and Treatment:

People around you will be concerned about your health. It can be difficult to talk to others about having a life-threatening disease, but doing so can help you gather support and ease any feelings of isolation you may have.

Working Through Treatment:

Perhaps you're wondering if you can keep working while you're in treatment for breast cancer. Consider your health, your treatment plan, and your financial situation - then decide on whether or not to go on working while you're in treatment for breast cancer. You may have a lot to balance, and you might be able to negotiate your way to a good compromise. Here are some good points to keep in mind.
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