A diagnosis of cancer can be a frightening and overwhelming experience, and men respond in all kinds of ways. You might feel shocked or angry. You may be concerned about the future and how a diagnosis of prostate cancer will affect your life and your loved ones. It can be difficult and stressful trying to make a decision about your treatment. There is no right or wrong way to feel, and you may find that your feelings change over time. Your family may also find this a difficult time and may need some support.
Many men find that talking about their cancer can help them to cope. Some men find that talking to a partner, friend or relative can help. However, some men find it difficult to share their feelings with someone close to them and prefer to talk to someone else.
You and those close to you can speak to one of our Specialist Nurses by calling our confidential helpline. They can help you to understand your diagnosis and the emotional effects of cancer. You may also find it helpful to talk to your nurse, doctor or GP about how you are feeling. If you would like some more support, they may be able to put you in touch with a counsellor.
Asking questions can help you understand what is happening, and may help you feel more in control. You may find it useful to write down any questions you have to take along to your appointments.
You and your family may find that talking to someone with similar experiences helps. Our support volunteers are all men and women personally affected by prostate cancer. They are trained to listen and offer support over the telephone. Call our Specialist Nurses on our confidential helpline to arrange to speak to a volunteer.
If you have access to the internet, you and your family can join our online community on our website at prostatecanceruk.org You can share your experiences with other men and their families. There are also prostate cancer support groups across the country, where you and your family can meet other people affected by prostate cancer. You can find details on our website or ask your nurse.
You may find that making changes to your diet gives you more control over your body and is something that you can do for yourself. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and being physically active will benefit your overall health and may be helpful in slowing down the growth of the cancer. Diet and physical activity may also help you cope with the side effects of treatment and any feelings of anxiety.
If you live in England and are having treatment for cancer, including treatment for the symptoms of cancer or treatment for the side effects of a cancer treatment, you are entitled to free prescriptions. You will need to apply for a medical exemption certificate.
Ask your doctor for a FP92A form. Once you have filled out the form, your doctor will need to sign it, and you will be sent the certificate. You can find out more about free prescriptions at NHS Choices. If you live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, all prescriptions are free.