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BTCS Professionals
Information for healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses and allied healthcare professionals.
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After treatment

It can be a difficult time after the treatment phase, especially when initial diagnosis was quite speedy and some treatments very intensive.  

With the aid of It's in the Bag we offer a range of supportive activities to help you after your treatment.

A diagnosis of cancer is devastating at any age and whilst we understand that Testicular Cancer is in the most part curable, we do not underestimate the effect of surgery, treatment and surveillance on your physical, emotional, social, spiritual and sexual well being. 

The link below has some helpful hints on getting back on track.

Holistic Needs Clinic

All patients should be offered an appointment in the Holistic Needs Clinic. This clinic is run by the Germ Cell CNS and gives you time to talk about your concerns after treatment. You will be asked to complete a concerns checklist and then given an opportunity to discuss your concerns with the nurse. The nurse may recommend some lifestyle changes, helpful signposts to information and support, information on current support activities called It's in the Banter.

Get into your NEW PANTS!

pants

N - Now what? 

The majority of men diagnosed with Testicular Cancer will live long and healthy lives, however it is in your best interests to attend hospital visits to check if the tumour has come back. Sometimes you may feel that it is a waste of your time and you are unsure why you need to continue to be seen. Because Testicular Cancer is so treatable, if it was to come back it needs to be treated immediately, but you can help the doctor too. If you experience new back or abdominal pain, shortness of breath not associated with infection and/or discovers a new lump in your remaining testicle let the team know and we will arrange a sooner appointment. The BTCS is there to provide clinical care and help steer you in the right direction for support, however here are a few tips to help your recovery.

E - Emotional health 

Some men describe the time after treatment as the most difficult as the emotional support from the clinical team appears not so available. This is a time of change and adapting to your new life. You may have found your friends and relationships have changed and those who you believed would be there for you have found your diagnosis difficult too. The fear of the cancer coming back is to be expected and as you get further away from your initial diagnosis these feelings will diminish, however if these feelings become difficult please contact a member of the BTCS and we will arrange some support for you.

W - Work and education

Getting back to work or restarting your studies is a challenging time and you may need support to do this. Do not underestimate the effect of treatment by agreeing to do more than you are able to. Start with shorter days and rest regularly. You may find your employer/tutor very understanding when you explain your situation, however they may require written information regarding your needs and abilities. The BTCS will be happy to provide this for you.  

P - Physical

It is important for all of us to take regular exercise, however we do know that after intensive treatment men often experience severe fatigue which can impact on all areas of health and well being. This may be the time to take up a new sport, get back to regular exercise or even get a personal trainer. A gradual build up of physical activity is advised, with specific goals. Some men find it a challenge to get back to their former fitness and the speed of recovery frustrating, be patient and your fitness level will return, albeit slower than you expect.

A - Alter your diet

www.nhs.uk/LiveWell/Goodfood/Pages/Goodfoodhome.aspx

N - No to smoking

Now is the time to give up smoking, want help? SMOKE FREE

T - Trim back the alcohol and give up recreational drugs

 www.nhs.uk/LiveWell/Alcohol/Pages/Alcoholhome.aspx

S - Sex and relationships

Testicular Cancer and its treatment can have an impact on your sexuality and relationships. We also understand that some men find having an orchidectomy impacts on body image, being male and new relationships. Talking about these issues is paramount and needs to be with someone who you are comfortable with; this could be your partner, close friend, doctor or your clinical nurse specialist. The main advice is to be patient and your sexual desire and function will return to normal, but in the event this does not happen there are simple methods and support to help you, so let the team know at your next visit. Chemotherapy and abdominal surgery may impact on your fertility and men worry about their ability to be a father in the future, while we offer pre-treatment advice and sperm storage, we also have good links with Bristol Centre for Reproductive Medicine if there are issues you would like to discuss or arrange for sperm analysis please let us know.

www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Sexualhealthtopics/Pages/Sexual-health-hub.aspx

Survivorship Toolkit

ST Day

The Bristol Testicular Cancer Service and It's in the Bag have developed a Surviorship Toolkit for men diagnosed with Testicular Cancer (Germ Cell) They are a combination of day courses and more in depth weekend personal development courses to get you on the route  to recovery and living a full and healthy life.

Cancer can affect your life in so many ways. The toolkit encourages you to explore the meaning of cancer in your life with people who understand the impact of the journey. Share your experience with other men in similar situations, and think about what steps you could take now to help you. This course has been specifically designed for men with testicular cancer and Germ Cell cancer.

The course includes information and discussion on healthy eating, exercise, understanding the impact of cancer on your emotions and relationships and sharing practical tips. These courses are seen as being integral to your care and we strongly recommend that all men attend at least the day course.

Day courses 2017/18:

Monday 4th December 2017

Monday 5th March 2018

Monday 4th June 2018

Monday 17th September 2018

Monday 3rd December 2018

Personal Development Weekends 2018:

18th - 20th May 2018

2nd - 4th November 2018

The Aztec Hotel and Spa Bristol

You can now change your outpatient appointments by clicking here