An advanced prostate cancer diagnosis commonly causes worry and fear. Of course you feel less certain about the future. Uncertainty may result if:
- You have to put plans on hold. For example, you may not be able to plan future activities due to appointments or treatments. Try to remain flexible and accept that plans you make may change, and that’s okay.
- You have fear about further cancer treatments, their side effects and whether treatment will work. Learning more about the treatment itself may help. Remember that treatments do not work the same for each person. Knowing what your options are may help to reduce such fears.
- You have fear that the cancer will spread to other major body organs. You may worry a lot about every new symptom in the body. Speak to the members of your healthcare team regularly if you are concerned about your health at all. Talking to a social worker, psychologist or counsellor may also teach you strategies for dealing with this ongoing fear of uncertainty and recurrence.
- You are afraid of dying. Thinking about end of life can be confronting and distressing both for you and those close to you. It is normal to struggle with these types of emotions but if your feelings become too much, talk with a member of your healthcare team (e.g. nurse, psychologist, social worker) about strategies to help you cope.
Feelings of uncertainty can also sometimes feed other emotions such as anxiety, fear or sadness. They can also affect your physical health and interrupt your sleep patterns or appetite.