“I read quite a bit about breast cancer before I saw the oncologist. I felt as though I understood the main issues and that I was able to participate in making decisions about my treatment with my doctor.” – Heather
Learning about breast cancer and its treatment is a good way to feel more in control of your situation. It may also prepare you for discussions with your doctors.
Breast cancer is treated in different ways. Your specialists will talk to you about which options are best suited to your individual needs. Remember that your situation is unique and your treatment may be different from that of other people.
Breast cancer treatments
There are a number of treatment options for breast cancer. These include:
The following tips aim to help you work through your treatment options.
- Read information before your appointment so you are prepared for what your doctors might discuss with you. It will also help you prepare questions you might want to ask them.
- Our My Journey is a free resource that provides up-to-date, reliable information tailored to your changing needs and circumstances. It also includes helpful questions to ask your doctor about your treatment.
- Talking to others on the online network may also help. You might find that they have a good understanding of what you’re going through.
- Choose how much information you want. Every person’s needs are different and it’s up to you to decide how much you want to know ahead of time.
- Let your doctor know how you’re feeling so he or she can help you with any side effects.
BCNA’s My Journey
My Journey is where you go to get all your breast cancer information about your diagnosis in one place. Whether you have early breast cancer, DCIS or metastatic breast cancer, My Journey provides you with the latest information tailored to suit your situation. You can access this information through My Journey via an app or web browser at www.myjourney.org.au
Optimal Care Pathway
The Breast Cancer Optimal Care Pathway sets out a national standard of high-quality cancer care that all Australians with breast cancer should expect. The Optimal Care Pathway puts the patient at the centre of care decisions.
The Your guide to cancer care fact sheet is a consumer version of the Optimal Care Pathway and provides information to help you from breast cancer diagnosis through to recovery or living with advanced disease.
The fact sheet is also available in 7 other languages on the Cancer Council website.
The fact sheets were developed by Cancer Australia and Cancer Council, with support from the Victorian Government.
Cancer Australia was established by the Australian Government in 2006 to minimise the impact of cancer, address disparities and improve the health outcomes of people affected by cancer by providing national leadership in cancer control. The Cancer Australia website provides a wide range of evidence-based information about cancer and evidence-based resources to download.
These include the Cancer Australia Statement – Influencing best practice in breast cancer. The statement highlights 10 key appropriate and inappropriate practices as priority areas for breast cancer treatment and care.
Visit canceraustralia.gov.au for more information.