When you have finished treatment it will be important for you to be monitored to check for any signs that the cancer has returned or become active again. You will be seen in clinic regularly, by your surgical team, oncology team, or both. Follow up will normally involve an examination by your doctor, together with an x-ray or scans, depending on where your cancer was. Even if your cancer is completely gone, we will still need to check you for several years.
It is also important that you monitor and check your condition regularly alongside your routine follow-up appointments, as you may become aware of a change before your next appointment is due.
To check for any changes around the site of the original tumour, run your fingers and feel gently around the area, feeling for any new lumps or something that doesn't feel normal for you (remember to let any wounds heal before doing this). Make sure you check approximately once a month. Doing it more often may cause you to worry. It is also important to gently check for any lumps or changes elsewhere in your body.
It is vital that you raise any concerns quickly to your team at UCLH/RNOH or your GP.
The Sarcoma Late Effects Service is run by Dr Rachael Windsor, Consultant Paediatric and Adolescent Oncologist within the London Sarcoma Service. It is within the umbrella of the wider UCLH Late Effects Service, benefiting from a wide multidisciplinary team including clinical nurse specialists, nephrology, cardiology, endocrinology and reproductive medicine expertise.
Patients enter the service 5-years after completing their treatment and care is lifelong. Our aim is to reduce the potential long-term effects of intensive treatment through surveillance and early intervention. Research into the long-term effects of treatment is also an important aspect of the service and you may be offered the opportunity to participate in a research study.