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35

NCCN Guidelines for Patients

®

Adolescents and Young Adults with Cancer, Version 1.2017

4

Navigating the treatment process

Who is on my treatment team?

††

Oncology nurses

will provide much of your

hands-on care, like giving chemotherapy,

managing your care, answering questions,

and helping you cope with side effects.

††

Oncology nurse practitioners

and

physician assistants

may also perform

health checks and physical exams. They

can also order and review tests, prescribe

medication, and order chemotherapy.

††

Social workers

provide counseling and also

help with discharge planning and home care.

They can also find local resources that offer

support.

††

A patient navigator

can help with arranging

financial support, transportation, and childcare

during treatment. They can also coordinate

care among several doctors.

††

A dietitian or nutritionist

can give nutritional

advice and help you plan menus to meet your

nutritional needs during cancer treatment.

Depending on your diagnosis your team may also

have:

††

A surgical oncologist

who will perform any

surgery.

††

Anesthesiologists

who will give anesthesia

during surgery or procedures.

††

A radiation oncologist

who will prescribe

and plan radiation therapy.

††

A pathologist

who reviews laboratory tests

and evaluates cells, tissues, and organs

removed during a biopsy or surgery.

††

A diagnostic radiologist

who reviews the

results of x-rays and other imaging tests.

††

A psychiatrist or clinical psychologist

who

can help you cope with the psychological and

emotional effects of dealing with cancer.

††

Physical, occupational, speech, and

respiratory therapists

who can help you with

specific problems related to the cancer and

recovery from treatment side effects.

The final and most crucial member of the treatment

team is also the only one who will be there for every

part of the process—you. And you know your body

better than anyone. Help other team members

understand:

††

How you feel

††

What you need

††

What’s working and what is not

You should never wait to ask questions or seek other

opinions. Let your treatment team know when you’re

feeling overwhelmed or need to take a break.

Your team may get larger the further along you

are in treatment. To keep track of everyone, think

about putting together a list of names and contact

information for each member of your treatment team.

It will make it easier for you—and any loved ones

involved in your care—to know who to contact when

questions or problems come up.