- Cancer Information
- Living well
- Living well after cancer
- Fear of the cancer returning
- Fear of getting a different cancer
Fear of getting a different cancer
Some survivors worry about developing a different type of cancer. While this is not common, some people develop a second cancer that may not be related to the first cancer.
See Managing the fear of recurrence for some tips that may help you deal with the fear of developing a different cancer.
The following factors may increase your risk of developing another type of cancer:
- exposure to cigarette smoke or other cancer-causing agents
- skin damage caused by overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or artificial sources such as solariums
- being born with an inherited gene that increases the chance of developing some cancers (about 5% of cancers)
- having some forms of cancer treatment, particularly as a child
- lifestyle factors such as smoking, eating an unhealthy diet, drinking too much alcohol, being overweight, and not getting enough
Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about any risk factors. See Taking control of your health for ways to reduce your cancer risk.
It helps to focus on what is happening now, what is actually known – not all the possibilities. One step at a time.
Dr Haryana Dhillon, Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Medical Psychology & Evidence-based Decision-making, School of Psychology, University of Sydney, NSW; Polly Baldwin, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council SA; Jessica Barbon, Dietitian, Southern Adelaide Health Network, SA; Dr Anna Burger, Liaison Psychiatrist and Senior Staff Specialist, Psycho-oncology Clinic, Canberra Region Cancer Centre, ACT; Elizabeth Dillon, Social Worker, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Prof Paul Glare, Chair in Pain Medicineand Director, Pain Management Research Institute, University of Sydney, NSW; Nico le Kinnane, Nurse Coordinator, Gynaecology Services, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Amanda Piper, Manager, Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Kyle Smith, Exercise Medicine Research Institute, Edith Cowan University, WA; Aaron Tan, Consumer; Dr Kate Webber, Medical Oncologist and Research Director, National Centre for Cancer Survivorship, NSW. We also thank the health professionals, consumers and editorial teams who have worked on previous editions of this title.
View the Cancer Council NSW editorial policy.
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