Bone Cancer Primary Treatment Living

If someone you love is living with bone cancer or bone marrow cancer, one of the most important things you can do, especially if you’re a caregiver, is to care for yourself. Otherwise, you won’t have the strength and emotional reserves to help anyone. Eat well, relax and get enough sleep and exercise.

You may also find support groups helpful as sources for practical information and as a way to discuss your concerns with other people who understand the issues, such as dealing with a bone cancer prognosis or facing bone marrow cancer. Ask about support groups in your area or search for online groups. Many people also find spiritual support helpful.

Life with Bone Cancer: For Friends

If the person with cancer is a friend or adult family member, the most important thing to remember is that he will make his own decisions about treatment and other factors. Offer advice only if he asks for it. Sometimes, it’s best to suggest that he speak with a healthcare provider about these concerns.

If you’re not sure how to help the person (or even if the person wants your help), ask. Many times, just being available to talk and listen (especially listen!) is the best way to help someone dealing with life with bone cancer. Remember that your friend or family member probably wants to talk about more than her cancer; she still has interests and hobbies and wants to hear about the outside world.

A few other points to remember:

  • Avoid platitudes.
  • Everyone is different.
  • Don’t make assumptions about what someone who is living with bone cancer does or doesn’t want.
  • If the bone cancer prognosis isn’t good, and the person mentions death, don’t let your discomfort get in the way of listening compassionately.
  • Respect the times that the person just wants to be alone.

Living with Cancer: For Caregivers

Being the caregiver for a child living with bone cancer presents additional challenges. The Mayo Clinic recommends that you keep your child’s life as normal as possible, letting them participate in their routine activities to the degree they desire and the doctor says is OK (2009). Listen to your child’s concerns and don’t try to gloss over them.

Although cancer is a potentially scary diagnosis, many people overcome cancer to live long, normal lives. They will appreciate your support.

For additional resources and support about life with bone cancer or bone marrow cancer, contact the following organizations:

  • American Cancer Society at 800-ACS-2345 (800-227-2345)
  • National Cancer Institute at 800-4-CANCER (800-422-6237).

Resources

Australian Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Network. (2009). Specific ways to support a loved one with cancer. Retrieved October 4, 2010, from http://www.ahln.org/support.htm#specific.

Cancer Treatment Centers of America. (2008). Bone cancer treatments — Spiritual support. Retrieved October 4, 2010, from http://www.cancercenter.com/bone-cancer/spiritual-support.cfm.

Mayo Clinic. (2009). Bone cancer. Retrieved September 23, 2010, from http://www.mayoclinic.com/print/bone-cancer/DS00520/DSECTION=all