What to do before treatment starts
Talk with your doctor about whether you need to do anything to prepare for treatment.
Check heart functionRadiation therapy to the chest and some types of chemotherapy may affect the way your heart works. Your doctor may recommend you have some tests before, during and/or after treatment to check your heart function.
Ask about fertilitySome treatments for non-Hodgkin lymphoma can cause infertility, meaning you will no longer be able to have children. If having children is important to you, ask your doctor before treatment starts about whether there are options for preserving your fertility. You may be able to store sperm, eggs, ovarian tissue or embryos.For more on this, see Fertility and cancer.
Get a dental check-upIf possible, see a dentist before having chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant, or radiation therapy to the head and neck area. If mouth and teeth problems are left untreated, they can lead to infections after cancer treatment.For more on this, see Mouth health and cancer treatment.
Download a PDF booklet on this topic.
Dr Ian Bilmon, Haematologist, Westmead and Sydney Adventist Hospitals; Dr Anne Capp, Radiation Oncologist, Calvary Mater Newcastle; Rachelle Frith, Clinical Nurse Consultant Haematology, Prince of Wales Hospital; Jason Gardner, Consumer; A/Prof Angela Hong, Radiation Oncologist, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, and Clinical Professor, The University of Sydney; Yvonne King, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council NSW; Samantha Rennie, Social Worker, Cancer Services, St George Hospital. 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.
Coping with cancer?
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Practical advice and support during and after treatment