Prostate cancer is the third-most common cancer among Singaporean men, with the risk of getting it increasing beyond the age of 50 and with individuals with a family history of prostate cancer at a higher risk than others. Prostate cancer can be a silent killer, progressing slowly with no symptoms during early stages and developing to later stages over months or years.
During late stage or end stage prostate cancer, patients will require a lot of support from family members and loved ones at home and perhaps professional home care for their prostate cancer medical needs when they are too weak to travel for frequent hospital visits.
If prostate cancer is detected early, chemotherapy can help to reduce symptoms or eradicate cancer cells. Chemotherapy involves the use of potent drugs to destroy cancer cells and is usually injected into a vein or muscle. There are also some chemotherapy drugs that are taken several times a day orally in a tablet or liquid form.
Complete remission of some cancers is possible with chemotherapy alone and such cases are common in Singapore. In other cases, chemotherapy is combined with surgery and/or radiotherapy to remove remaining cancer cells.
Chemotherapy treatment is typically carried out in repeating cycles. A cycle of treatment can be between 2-6 weeks, and repeated again depending on the progression and whether the doctor recommends a different dose or type of drugs. Thus, keeping up with the treatment visits, going for follow-up tests and adequate home care are important to help your loved one during the process.
Some individuals may be able to continue working with some adjustments with their employers, such as working from home. However, most patients undergoing chemotherapy usually feel weaker and find themselves unable to continue working long hours.
The process of chemotherapy treatment can be summarized as follows:
Chemotherapy tends to weaken the patient’s immune system, thus some adjustments may be required at home and in daily activities. For example, bacteria is often present in uncooked food, thus avoiding foods such as sushi and runny eggs is recommended. When leaving the house, your loved one may have to put on a mask to minimize exposure to harmful bacteria and viruses in the environment.
Many people in Singapore have the misconception that palliative care options are for patients who are near death. However, palliative care options can be introduced at the early stages of any cancer treatment including for prostate cancer. Palliative care helps manage the various side effects of chemotherapy treatment. It is a holistic care that provides patients with a more comfortable journey to recovery in the comfort of a familiar environment. Check out our comprehensive palliative care guide on how you can receive palliative home care for colon cancer in the comfort of your home.
While many of us want to provide home care to help our loved ones during their cancer battle, it can be difficult to take on full-time caregiving duties. Jaga-Me’s trained professionals are able to carry out medical procedures at home and our home care services for prostate cancer patients can help relieve you of some of your duties. Our Singapore-certified nurses are able to care for your loved ones and carry out any medical procedure that they require on a day-to-day basis.