Cancer Support Group

Sunday, Dec 17th

Last update:06:42:40 AM GMT

Home Showcasing Initiatives Shanti Avedana Sadan Approach to Cancer Patients Queries

Approach to Cancer Patients Queries

1) Doctor have I got cancer?
Initially more than 80% patients did not know they had cancer. Now only 20% are unaware of their diagnosis. However they feel they will get cured and need not worry about it. Very often relations of the patients request the doctor not to tell the patient he has cancer. What they do not know is that very often the patients already know or suspect they have cancer or as time goes by they learn about it themselves. So for those who want to know, we tell them immediately and for those who would like to know it in stages, we give them time to find out for themselves but eventually tell them the whole truth in the course of time.

2) Doctor am I going to suffer?
The moment the patient comes to know that he has cancer, the first thought that crosses his mind is the possible suffering that may be caused by it.
  • The tearful thought of having severe pain
  • Being incapacitated and dependent on others
  • having to take endless medications
  • having to under go surgery radio therapy all fill the mind with worry and mental agony. It is then that a few general words of explanation, comfort and consolation from the physician to his patient can do much more than a lot of other medications.
3) Doctor how long have I to live for?
Giving a specific length of time for survival is disastrous because the patient tries to live only within that time. One of our patients was given a particular date of survival and he wrote post cards to all his friends saying that on such and such date he would be no more. The day came and went and he was still very much alive and he had to write post cards saying he was still around and now did not know when the date would come. It would have been better by for if he was not left to count the days of his survival, but was told to take and enjoy one day at a time for whatever period the Almighty had given him. I would like to end in the words of one of patients who is fighting cancer for the last seven years she says
  • C – Challenge life
  • A – Acceptance
  • N – Never give up
  • C – Courage
  • E – Embalam and treasure upon purpose to a life beyond life
  • R – Reflect on a positive side

It was in darkness that I found life.
It was in the pain that I found pain.
It was in the dying that I found the need of prayer.
It is through the love of God that I found meaning in my life.

Cancer, death, loss of loved ones are not the issue but love and healing are.

Contribution by
Dr. Zulica Barretto
Shanti Avedna Sadan
Bandra west
Mumbai–400050

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