All breast cancer survivors should see their health care providers on a regular basis. The goals of these follow-up visits are to:
Follow-up care after breast cancer treatment (see Figure 6.1) includes :
During follow-up visits, your health care provider will ask you about any symptoms or concerns you are having.
These visits are a good time to talk about how you’re coping emotionally. Your provider can also refer you to a support group or counselor.
Plan for care
Medical history and physical exam
Every three to six months for the first three years, every six to 12 months for years four and five, then every 12 months.
Mammogram (for remaining breast tissue and/or opposite breast)
Women treated with lumpectomy plus radiation therapy
One year after diagnostic mammogram, six months after radiation therapy ends, then every 12 months.
Women treated with mastectomy
Every 12 months.
Pelvic exam and Pap smear
Women on tamoxifen who have not had their uterus removed (have not had a hysterectomy)
Bone health exams
Women at higher risk of osteoporosis due to risk factors including:
Bone mineral density tests every one to two years, depending on a person’s risk factors.
Women at lower risk of osteoporosis
Office visit to check osteoporosis risk, every 12 months.
Adapted from National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) and American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) materials [20-21,167].
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends breast cancer survivors get the seasonal flu shot.
People currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer and long-term survivors:
If you have had chemotherapy, radiation therapy or other breast cancer treatments in the past month, call your health care provider right away if you have any flu symptoms.
Find more information from the CDC about the seasonal flu.
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