Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 40

Survivorship
LONG-TERM FOLLOW UP
Surveillance
is not enough.
was, post treatment. Later, when looking for
an internship, I came across the Reid R. Sacco
AYA Cancer Program at Tufts Medical Center.
They were dedicated to providing long-term
follow up (survivorship) care to adolescents
and young adults. I remember thinking how
cool is this, a program devoted to AYAs! But,
then I also wondered what is survivorship care?
How does it pertain to me? My cancer experience
had been bloodwork, catscans or x-rays
for the past five years, what else was there?
Fast forward to today, I've learned a lot about
survivorship care from the team I've been
lucky enough to work with over the last six
years. I now know this: surveillance for cancer
recurrence is not enough. We need to know
what our risks are for developing or managing
late effects from treatment. I didn't know
the amount of anthracycline chemotherapy
that I received puts me at increased cardiac
risk and therefore I should have screening
ECHOs. I didn't know I should get a baseline
pulmonary function test to check if the bleomycin
had impacted my lungs. I didn't know
that the friends who I met within the cancer
community who had received radiation are
at increased risk of a second cancer. I didn't
know, because I thought after the surveillance
period, I was done, with cancer.
At some point over the last thirteen years I
I
40
wouldn't be able to tell you the last time I cried, but I remember doing so on June 12, 2013.
Tears of relief, awe and slight trepidation. After six months of chemotherapy and five years of
six-month surveillance check-ins, I left my treating oncologist's office for the last time. I thought
I was done, with cancer.
Knowing that my five-year mark was approaching, I had started making plans. I was
finally ready to make some important lifestyle changes. I quit my job and relocated to start grad
school. My first assignment was to write about an aspect of my identity. I wrote about being a
cancer survivor, even though I had thought I was done, with cancer.
I was able to devote most of my degree into studying young adult cancer survivors as our own
cultural group. Although we have our own individual experiences, we share a common language
and are able to relate to one another on topics that others without a cancer experience just can't.
Through my studies, I discovered the AYA cancer community and more about myself, who I
stopped thinking about cancer as something
that is done or that you can complete. I've
realized it is an experience that I'll take with
me, and instead focus on how much I've grown
and have moved forward from cancer. Even
if treatment is done, our long term (physical,
mental, social, financial) health require ongoing
support and consideration. I learned we
must advocate for our long-term follow up care
and ideally receive a personalized Survivorship
Care Plan. Sometimes we choose a cause, mine
found me: AYAs deserve survivorship care and
to be informed of their potential of late effects
from treatment. So, I guess I'm not done, with
cancer after all. l
RACHEL MURPHY BANKS WAS DIAGNOSED WITH HODGKIN LYMPHOMA AT THE AGE OF 25 AND COMPLETED
TREATMENT 13 YEARS AGO. WHILE SHE RECEIVED EXCELLENT MEDICAL CARE, SHE FELT SHE LACKED
PSYCHOSOCIAL SUPPORT AND INFORMATION ON POTENTIAL LATE EFFECTS FROM TREATMENT. FIVEYEARS
POST TREATMENT SHE STARTED A MASTER'S DEGREE WITH A FOCUS ON EMERGING ADULT
CANCER SURVIVORS AS OUR OWN CULTURAL GROUP. SINCE THEN SHE HAS LEVERAGED HER LIVED
EXPERIENCE TO, HOPEFULLY, IMPACT OTHERS WHO HAVE BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH CANCER.
ELEPHANTSANDTEA.COM
JUNE 2021
http://www.ELEPHANTSANDTEA.COM

Elephants And Tea - June 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Elephants And Tea - June 2021

Contents
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - Cover1
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - Cover2
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 1
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - Contents
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 3
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 4
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 5
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 6
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 7
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 8
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 9
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 10
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 11
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 12
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 13
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 14
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 15
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 16
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 17
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 18
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 19
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 20
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 21
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 22
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 23
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 24
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 25
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 26
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 27
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 28
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 29
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 30
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 31
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 32
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 33
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 34
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 35
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 36
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 37
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 38
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 39
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 40
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 41
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 42
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 43
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 44
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 45
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 46
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 47
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - 48
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - Cover3
Elephants And Tea - June 2021 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com