Sometimes it is difficult to decide on the type of treatment to have. You may feel that everything is happening too fast. Check with your doctor how soon your treatment should start, and take as much time as you can before making a decision.
Understanding the disease, the available treatments and possible side effects can help you weigh up the pros and cons of different treatments and make a well-informed decision that’s based on your personal values. You may also want to discuss the options with your doctor, complementary health practitioner, friends and family.
You have the right to accept or refuse any treatment offered. Some people with more advanced cancer choose treatment even if it offers only a small benefit for a short period of time. Others want to make sure the benefits outweigh the side effects so they have the best possible quality of life.
Deciding whether to use complementary therapies and which ones to choose is a similar process to deciding on a course of conventional treatment. Some people with cancer may feel pressure from friends and family to use complementary therapies, and may feel guilty if the therapy they choose doesn’t offer any benefit.
Some people will consider complementary therapies at the time of their diagnosis; others will not think about using them until later, perhaps as part of their supportive or palliative care.
Cancer Council warns against delaying or stopping conventional treatment in favour of an alternative therapy.
Learn more about:
- Finding a complementary therapist
- Can I help myself or should I see a professional?
- Talking with others and getting a second opinion
- The costs of complementary therapy
- Taking part in a clinical trial
Helpful tips for choosing complementary therapies
Weigh up the different types of treatments
Find out more about different therapies
Discuss your concerns