Ongoing Care of Patients After Primary Treatment for Their Cancer


  • Dr. Herman Kattlove MD, MPH,

    1. Kattlove is Medical Editor, Health Promotions Department, American Cancer Society, Los Angeles, CA
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  • Dr. Rodger J. Winn MD

    1. Winn is Chair, National Comprehensive Cancer Network's Guidelines Steering and Principal Investigators Committee, National Comprehensive Cancer Network, Rockledge, PA
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This article is corrected by:

  1. Errata: Errata Volume 53, Issue 5, 315, Article first published online: September 2003


Nearly nine million people living in the United States have had a diagnosis of cancer. As the population ages, this number will increase. Most of these people will need follow-up care to deal with problems related to their cancer. Depending on the cancer, they may or may not benefit from surveillance to detect recurrence. Most will be more likely than average to develop a second primary cancer. Some will be genetically susceptible to another type of cancer. Many will have complications from their treatment that need attention. Also, their treatment may have altered certain physiologic functions. Finally, many will have suffered psychosocial difficulties either as a result of their cancer or its treatment. This article deals with these issues for the most commonly encountered cancers. Its major goal is to alert physicians to be aware of and help them to deal with these issues. Clearly, such an ambitious goal can only be partly achieved in a single journal article. Hopefully, the references included will allow physicians to proceed further if they wish.