Dear patient finding out that you or a loved one has cancer can be overwhelming, we know the experience of cancer is not just medical, it is personal. And we recognize that whenever one person receives a cancer diagnosis, the person's entire family is affected by the illness. Thankfully, Many people who are diagnosed with cancer today are treated successfully and enjoy long-term survival. Nearly 60% of the cancer patients can now be cured. Effective treatment requires a close collaborative effort by specialists from several different areas of expertise starting from the earliest stages of the disease. Family co-operation is essential to the patient.
Kidwai Memoirial Institute of Oncology (KMIO) is a Regional Cancer Centre, recognized as a Center of Excellence in Oncology. We wish to comfort you that you are in the hand of experienced Team of Doctors. KMIO is one of the nation's premier facilities for cancer treatment and research. KMIO provides a positive environment for treatment, care, and recovery for patients with all forms of cancer. KMIO has facilities for technologically advanced cancer treatments. Each patient is seen as an individual, and a specific treatment plan is developed by specialist doctors who work directly with the patient & family. It is our desire to provide services for improving the comfort and quality of life of patients. Even with the increasing patient load and limited financial resources, we at KMIO strive hard to enhance the comfort and quality of life of people living with cancer and those who love them.
There are many types of cancer and many ways to treat it. Same types of cancer many by virtue of the preexisting disease and patients general conditions may require tailored treatment schedules. Specialist doctors recommend different treatments depending on the type of cancer and how far it has progressed. Often the best treatment is a combination of strategies. At KMIO you will be treated in one or more of our multispecialty clinics. Each clinic has a team of physicians and health care professionals, such as medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists, head & neck oncologist, gynecologic oncologist, psychologists, nurses, nutritionists, social workers, counselors and more, who are experts in their specialties. This multidisciplinary approach means our patients get the best treatment possible: treatment tailored to them.
At KMIO we encourage good communication between patients with cancer, family caregivers, and our health care team. Build a trusting relationship between the patient, family caregivers, and the health care team. Help the patient, family caregivers and health care team share information with each other. Help the patient and family talk about feelings and concerns. Good communication is known to help improve patients well-being and quality of life. We encourage the patient and care takers to communicate about concerns and decision made, during all phases of treatment and supportive care for cancer. In view of the huge patient load, we advise you to prepare a list of questions and doubts that you have in your mind and clarify the same with your treating physician during the outpatient clinics.
Patients, their families, and their health care team face many issues when cancer is diagnosed. Cancer is a life-threatening illness, even though advances in treatments have increased the chances of a cure or remission. A patient who is diagnosed with cancer may feel fear and anxiety about treatments that are often difficult, expensive, and complicated. Decisions about the patient's care can be very hard to make. We encourage patients, families, and doctors jointly make these decisions together and improve the patient's well-being and quality of life.
Patients and their responsible care takers are advised to discuss with your doctor and obtain the following information. Get to know the type of cancer patient is suffering from. Stage of the Cancer, The Treatment options for the type of cancer. Also be aware of the patients fitness which is variable depending on the co-existing diseases. Understand the nature of the disease at hand and prognosis. What to expect out of the proposed treatment, advantages and disadvantages, expected outcome i.e, control rates, high or low chance of disease recurrences, metastasis etc, Side effects due to treatment (during and after treatment), be aware of unexpected drug reaction which may occur due to inherent sensitivities, tolerance to surgery or any other anticancer procedure, expected duration of Investigations, Final Diagnosis and Staging, Treatment Plan etc and expected duration of treatment at KMIO and also the need for ward admissions (inpatient) / treatment on outpatient care etc. the expected over all approximate cost of treatment is suggested to be discussed with your specialist doctor.
Inview of the huge patient load we advice the patients and their relatives to prepare a list of questions to be discussed with your doctor. We believe that when patients and doctors communicate well during cancer care, there are many positive results. Patients are usually: More satisfied with care and feel more in control, More likely to follow through with treatment, More informed of the expected inevitable side effects or toxicities of treatment (during and after).
We generally come across situations where: Patients and their families should let the health care team know how much information they want about the cancer and its treatment. Some patients and families want a lot of detailed information. Others want less detail. Also, the need for information may change as the patient moves through diagnosis and treatment. Some patients with advanced disease want less information about their condition.
There may be differences in how involved patients and families want to be in making decisions about cancer care. Some patients and families may want to be very involved and make their own decisions about cancer care. Others may want to leave decisions to the doctor.
When important decisions are to be made. These important decision times include: When the patient is first diagnosed and a final diagnosis and staging is completed (generally in a week after registration ). Any time new decisions about treatment need to be made and started. As responsible relative are advised to accompany the patient and jointly give consent. After treatment, when discussing how well it worked. Whenever the goal of care changes. Certain occasions the patient may be unaware of the diagnosis, it is advisable to get clinical psychology counseling for breaking the news, as the patient will have to undergo the rigors of anti cancer treatment. There is also a need for patient to know the disease control status as and when required so as to facilitate the patients comfort. The patient makes his or her wishes known about advance directives, such as a living will.
Studies have shown that cancer patients who have end-of-life discussions with their doctors choose to have fewer procedures, such as resuscitation or the use of a ventilator. They are also less likely to be in intensive care, and the cost of their health care is lower during their final week of life. Reports from their caregivers show that these patients live as long as patients who choose to have more procedures and that they have a better quality of life in their last days.
Role of Families : Families can help patients make better decisions about their cancer care. Patients and their family members can join together as partners to communicate with the doctor and health care team. When possible, patients should decide how much help they want from family members when making decisions. Communication between family caregivers and the health care team should continue throughout cancer care. It should include information about the goals of treatment, plans for the patient's care, and what to expect over time in terms of prognosis/outcome, side effects and risk / benefits. Family-centered communication with the doctor helps the family understand its role in care giving. Family caregivers who get specific and practical direction from the health care team are more confident about giving care. When caregivers receive this help, they can give the patient better care.
Language: Communication can be more difficult if the doctor does not speak the same language as the patient and family, or if there are cultural differences. Every patient with cancer has the right to get clear information about the diagnosis and treatment so he or she can take full part in making decisions. We advise to have trained interpreters or have other ways to help with language differences.
If cultural beliefs will affect decisions about treatment and care, the Doctors and the health care team should be told about these beliefs. For example, a common Western belief is that an informed patient should make the final decision about cancer care.
A cancer diagnosis often brings sadness, anger, confusion, and feelings of helplessness. These feelings make it important for the person with cancer to know that support and help are readily available. Many times, those closest to the person with cancer provide the most support. However, sometimes it may be difficult to know what to say and what not to say, how to be sensitive, and how to remain supportive at all times.