A cancer recurrence means that the same cancer returns after a period of time. There is no way to tell if and when a cancer recurrence may occur. Cancer recurrence is one of the most common worries that many people face, especially in the first year after completing their cancer treatment. Many worry about losing control over their lives or facing death. While having some concerns is normal, too much fear and stress can have a negative impact on your life. Learning more about how to deal with this worry can help you to feel more confident and cope better as you return to your usual lifestyle after treatment.
Triggers of fear
Specific events can cause a temporary increase in your anxiety. This is perfectly normal. Knowing more about when these events may happen allows you to be more prepared to manage the worry. These may include:
What you can do
It is helpful to have a plan after you identify the triggers. Besides incorporating stress-relieving methods that have worked for you previously to cope with the trigger event, below are some other tips that you may find useful.
When to call your cancer care team
Please inform your healthcare team if you feel that the fear is affecting your daily life, or if you experience any of the following:
The above may indicate that you have
depression, which will need further assessment and treatment by your cancer care team. You may contact your medical social worker for counselling, or call
+65 6436 8417 or
+65 6436 8088 to book an appointment with our medical social worker if you are a patient with NCCS.
If you have any questions regarding the above information, please call Cancer Helpline at
+65 6225 5655 or approach your doctor or nurse for further details.
here to download the PDF version of this article.
The above contents are made available as part of TEMASEK FOUNDATION-ACCESS (Accessible Cancer Care to Enable Support for Survivors) PROGRAMME, a holistic care programme to support cancer patients during their care and recovery journey.
The contents have been approved by the Cancer Education Information Service, National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS), for people with cancer and their families and caregivers. However, this information serves only as a guide and should not be used as a substitute for medical diagnosis, treatment or advice. For specific medical conditions, please seek expert medical advice from your healthcare team.
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