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NCCN Guidelines for Patients


Adolescents and Young Adults with Cancer, Version 1.2017

What does a treatment plan


A treatment plan is a written course of action that

covers every stage of the treatment process, from

the first treatment onward. It serves as a guide for

everyone taking part in your care. It reminds everyone

of decisions that have already been made and plans

for the future.

If you’re in a relationship or still in your teens, your

partner, parents, or caregivers will probably want to

be involved in treatment planning. This can be a huge

help, particularly when you may be overwhelmed and

still in shock from the diagnosis. It’s important to keep

in mind that you have a say in your treatment plan.

Your loved ones can help you find information, take

notes, ask questions, and talk through your options,

but only you can decide if a treatment plan is right for


The specifics of your treatment plan will be based on

many things like the kind of cancer you have and also

your own personal needs and limits. As a young adult

with cancer, you may have treatment options that

children and older adults do not have.

For example:


Depending on your diagnosis, you may do

better with a pediatric treatment plan than one

designed for adults.


You can probably tolerate more intense

treatment options than older adults.


As a young, relatively healthy person (other

than cancer) you’re an excellent candidate for

a clinical trial.

Ask your treatment team to consider these factors

as they weigh your treatment options—including

suggestions from clinical guidelines related to the

type of cancer you have.

Cancer treatment is always evolving, and it’s not

always easy for doctors to keep up. That’s why

organizations such as the American Cancer Society,

the National Cancer Institute, and NCCN offer clinical

guidelines for the treatment of specific cancers.

These guidelines are based on the best available

science based evidence on cancer and its treatment.

The guidelines are important tools for coming up with

the right treatment plan for your diagnosis. You can

access NCCN Guidelines on specific cancers—and

on other aspect

s of care of AYAs

with cancer—on the

NCCN website, .


Navigating the treatment process

What does a treatment plan involve?

Accept help. Ask for help. Ask for

resources. There are many people who

want to support you, and it feels great.”

– Summer

Colon Cancer Survivor

Age at Diagnosis: 33