When Cure is not Possible

When Cure is Not Possible
Some cancers are like chronic illnesses. Although they cannot be cured, they can be controlled for many years. When cancer is in an advanced stage, whether as a first diagnosis or a recurrence (when the cancer comes back) it is important to access information and support for you and those close to you.

Patient and Family Support Services
People living with illness, and their loved ones, often experience emotions like fear, sadness, anxiety, grief and worry. Many people have such a rush of emotions that it can be hard to sort out. At Patient and Family Support Services we have experienced people to talk to and programs to help you and your loved ones cope.

Experienced counselors (psychosocial clinicians) are available to talk with you about issues related to living with advanced cancer. The services are:

We are able to meet with you individually or together with a family member, link you with resources and support groups, and help you sort out practical issues such as a change in your financial needs.

Anyone can request an appointment. Talk to your health care provider or call Patient and Family Support Services to arrange an appointment (204-787-2109 or toll-free 1-866-561-1026 extension 2109).

Living with Advanced Cancer
The Living with Advanced Cancer initiative at CancerCare Manitoba supports patients with a diagnosis of advanced cancer. The program includes a Living with Advanced Cancer appointment with your health care team where they give you a package of information. It also offers information and support sessions for patients and families on a monthly basis. To find out more about this program go to www.livingwithadvancedcancer.ca

Advance Care Planning
Making decisions about health care can seem overwhelming. The issues are often complex and involve talking about things that we are not used to thinking about. When thinking about health decisions you'll need to understand your current health situation, review your goals, and think about what options are available. Talking openly with your family and your health care team may reduce some of the anxiety and confusion of the decision-making process. It is important to plan who can make decisions for you if you cannot speak for yourself. To learn more about health care decisions click here.

What is Palliative Care?
Palliative care is a type of health care for patients and families facing life-threatening illness like advanced cancer. It provides care that makes patients feel better, but doesn't cure the cancer itself. The goal is reducing pain or discomfort caused by treatment or the cancer. Your health care providers are concerned about your quality of life (helping you feel as well as you can for as long as you can). Palliative care specialists may join the health care team or a referral to a palliative care program may take place. For more information on palliative care, please click here.

Pain and Symptom Management Clinics
Some patients living with cancer worry that they might have pain or discomfort that may be difficult to manage. If you are struggling with pain, nausea, shortness of breath, depression, anxiety or another symptom, you might need help from the Pain and Symptom Clinic at CancerCare Manitoba. Your cancer team, family doctor or nurse practitioner can send a referral. These clinics are held at both CancerCare Manitoba sites in Winnipeg (MacCharles and St. Boniface) and can also be accessed by Manitoba TeleHealth.