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If you will soon begin treatment for esophageal cancer, it is normal to feel worried or uncertain of how your treatment will go. However, you don’t need to go into your treatment completely unprepared. There are a number of physical and emotional preparations you can make before you start esophageal cancer treatment to help ensure things go as smoothly as possible.

Physical preparations for esophageal cancer treatment

  1. Arrange any at-home help you will need as you undergo treatment. This may include asking a family member to cook for you or hiring a housekeeper to keep your home clean.
  2. Pack a hospital bag to take with you to your treatment sessions. You might bring loose-fitting clothing, books, music, games and other items to keep you comfortable and occupied during your treatment.
  3. Learn about the possible side effects of the treatments you will be having and talk to your physician about the steps you can take to minimize them.

Emotional preparations for esophageal cancer treatment

Anxiety, anger and depression are all common emotions that frequently accompany a cancer diagnosis and treatment. However, you can learn how to effectively deal with these emotions and minimize the effects that they have on your overall well-being. Here are some ways to prepare yourself emotionally for treatment:

  1. Ask your physician any questions you have about your treatment. Knowing exactly what will be happening to your body may reduce some of the fear you are experiencing.
  2. Before you begin treatment, explore the supportive care services that are available. Counselors, social workers and other professionals are equipped to help you navigate the emotional challenges that you may be facing.
  3. Be upfront with your friends and family about your needs. Whether you would prefer to have some space or would like to have someone by your side throughout the duration of your treatment, your family and friends will likely be ready and willing to give you what you need.

Comprehensive treatment and supportive care services are available to those with esophageal cancer at Moffitt Cancer Center. To learn about our approach to esophageal cancer treatment, call 1-888-663-3488 or fill out a new patient registration form online. You do not need a referral to request a consultation.