It is a good idea to keep track of your symptoms, by taking note of the types of symptoms and their intensity. This information can be very helpful to both you and your doctor in tracking your medical condition.
Track Your Symptoms and Side Effects
Over time, it's often difficult to remember what symptoms you've had during the last week or month. Take time at the end of each day or each week to reflect back on the symptoms you've had. You can use a calendar to track your symptoms. Simply record the date and the symptom you're feeling. Also make sure to record your medical appointments and tests, so that you can see possible trends.
Rate Your Symptoms and Side Effects
Rating the severity of your symptoms and side effects can be a useful tool in spotting certain trends. You may learn to recognize how certain medications or foods affect you, how your energy level changes from one day to the next, and how your side effects relate to the timing of your treatment.
Tracking your symptoms and their severity can help you and your health care team find ways to help you cope more effectively with symptoms and treatment side effects.
A helpful way to track the severity of your symptoms is by rating your symptoms on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 indicating no symptom at all and 10 indicating very extreme experience of the symptom.
As you become familiar with your symptoms and how to manage them more effectively, you may decide to change the type of symptoms that you track or the frequency with which you record them.
Jot down questions, personal thoughts and feelings. Write down any questions that you want to ask your health care team. Write them down as they come to mind. That will help you remember your important questions during your office visit. You can also write down your thoughts and feelings, or try doodling or drawing pictures of how you feel.
UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.
Self-Care for Caregivers
Caregiver fatigue can be brought on by the physical and emotional demands of caring for a loved one with a serious illness. Learn tips to combat caregiver fatigue here.
Communicating with Your Doctor
The relationship with a doctor is a very personal one, built on communication and trust. In choosing a doctor, the "chemistry" between the two of you must work.
Coping with Chemotherapy
Each person experiences side effects from chemotherapy differently, and different chemotherapy drugs cause different side effects. Learn more here.
Delegation to Help with Fatigue
Fatigue caused by cancer treatment can make it difficult to accomplish even the smallest of tasks. Learn how task delegation can help with this fatigue.
Diet for Cancer Treatment Side Effects
Nausea is a common side effect of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Find practical tips and suggested foods to help with nausea here.
Evaluating Health Information
Health information can be extremely useful, empowering us to make important health decisions. However, it also can be confusing and overwhelming. Learn more.
FAQ: Cancer Pathology Tissue Slides
Find frequently asked questions regarding cancer pathology tissue slides, such as how to obtain the slides and what to do with them once you do.
FAQ: Cancer Radiology Scans and Reports
Learn the difference between a radiology report and radiology films or scans as well as why your doctor may be requesting these scans and more.
Hospice, which now exists in every state, provides home care and support for terminally ill patients. Learn more about the criteria and costs here.
Managing Your Treatment
Living with or caring for someone with cancer can be a full-time job. Here are some tips to reduce stress and help navigate the disease more effectively.
Nutrition and Coping with Cancer Symptoms
Side effects of cancer treatment may affect your eating pattern, requiring new ways to get the calories, protein and nutrients that you need. Learn more.
Questions to Ask Your Doctor
Your time with the doctor is limited, thus it's helpful to prepare for the visit in advance by prioritizing the questions that are important to you. Learn more.
Resources for End of Life
The UCSF Cancer Resource Center has a list of bereavement support groups, counselors, hospice and others dealing with end-of-life issues. Learn more.
Tips for Conserving Your Energy
Cancer and cancer therapy can be accompanied by feelings of extreme fatigue. To help you deal with this fatigue, follow these easy tips help conserve energy.
Cancer Survivorship and Wellness Institute
Bakar Precision Cancer Medicine Building
1600 Divisidero St., Fourth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94115
Bakar Precision Cancer Medicine Building
1600 Divisadero St.
San Francisco, CA 94115
Art for Recovery
Creativity can help people with serious illnesses cope, heal and express what they're going through. Find out about our program and how to join.
UCSF Patient Support Corps
Receiving a breast cancer diagnosis is stressful. Get guidance, support and answers to your questions here as you consider your options and make decisions.
Cancer Exercise Counseling
Our one-on-one exercise training sessions, customized for your needs and abilities, can complement other cancer treatments and speed your recovery.
Core and More Class
A strong body helps you fight cancer and enjoy life. Join this class to stabilize your core, strengthen your muscles and improve overall fitness. For cancer patients and caregivers!
Friend to Friend Gift Shop
A one-stop boutique for patients with cancer. Get professional help with wigs, prostheses, sun-protective clothing, makeup, skin care and more.
Meditation and Guided Imagery for Cancer Patients
Drop in for a free class designed to help you heal, relax and find balance during your treatment. UCSF and non-UCSF patients are welcome.
Neuro-Oncology Caregiver Program
At UCSF, we understand that a brain tumor diagnosis affects not only our patients, but also their families and loved ones. Learn more about the program here.
Oncology Social Work
Social workers can be key members of your cancer care team. Reach out for support, problem solving and help accessing UCSF's many cancer-related resources.
Patient and Family Cancer Support Center
You'll find support groups, classes, a library, treatment information, special events and much more to promote wellness and healing for patients and families.
Peer Support Program for Cancer
Patients are matched with peer support volunteers according to criteria such as diagnosis, cancer stage, age or gender. Speak to someone who's "been there."
Restorative Movement Class
Explore simple movements that help you feel more powerful and comfortable in your body. This fun and free UCSF class is aimed at those in recovery from cancer.
Pamper yourself while fighting cancer. Free treatments for patients receiving chemotherapy at our Mount Zion campus include massage, acupressure and more.