Follow-up Care for Gestational Trophoblastic Disease

Executive Summary for Gestational Trophoblastic Disease

Care for a cancer patient does not end with the end of active treatment. Subsequent to the treatment, the health care team looks after the cancer recurrence, managing the side effects developed due to the treatment and monitoring your overall health.

Your follow-up care includes medical tests, physical examination or both. Doctors usually keep track of your recovery in the months and years ahead. MRI scans done at regular intervals and a history and physical examination are best to monitor if the tumour is stable or is trying to come back.

Doctors keep track of the recovery months and years ahead. Follow-up treatment for Gestational trophoblastic disease always includes measuring hCG levels in the blood. Patients should talk to the doctors about the suggested time to wait before becoming pregnant after their body has normal hCG levels ​1​.

  • After a molar pregnancy, patients will have their hCG levels reviewed every week until they are typical for three weeks. Following which, hCG levels will be checked every month till the levels are normal for six months.
  • After GTN, patients will have their hCG levels reviewed every week until they are typical for three straight weeks. After that, hCG levels will be checked every month until the levels are expected for 12 consecutive months.

You should use reliable birth control during this testing time to avoid pregnancy. Talk to the doctor about how long you should use birth control during the follow-up care for GTD and the plans to become pregnant in the future ​2​.

People with a history of GTD should have an hCG check after each pregnancy, even if the pregnancy were completely normal.

Cancer rehabilitation is can mean any of a wide range of services, such as physical therapy, career counselling, pain management, nutritional planning, and emotional counselling ​3​

Follow-up Care for Gestational Trophoblastic Disease

Follow-up care for gestational trophoblastic disease refers to the after-treatment protocols conducted by the healthcare team to look after recurrence, manage the side effects, and monitor the overall health of the patient. Both medical and physical examinations are part of the follow-up care of gestational trophoblastic disease. Follow-up treatment for Gestational trophoblastic disease always includes measuring hCG levels in the blood. Patients should talk to the doctors about the suggested time to wait before becoming pregnant after their body has normal hCG levels. Reliable birth control during this testing time must be used to avoid pregnancy.

People with a history of GTD should have an hCG check after each pregnancy, even if the pregnancy is completely normal. In the test reports of the follow-up care, we look out for the recurrence of gestational trophoblastic disease or similar tumors. The methods of follow-up treatment are associated with chemo sessions, other related therapies, and more. The doctor will propose regular check-ups for late effects based on the treatment symptoms of the patient.

Managing the side effects while receiving treatment is a critical follow-up care approach. Having a personalized follow-up care plan is crucial from a team of medical experts. Open communication with the doctor regarding the long term effects of all the treatment will be effective in the future.

Watching out for recurrence

One of the things to take care of after cancer treatment is recurrence. Cancer recurrence happens when a few cancerous cells remain even after treatment. Scan-xiety describes the stress of the patient or the family before the follow-up tests. A recurrence occurs when the patient has new symptoms or an abnormal finding on physical examination. 

Managing long-term and late side effects

Most people encounter different side effects while receiving treatment. But in some patients, side effects linger beyond the treatment duration. These are the long term side effects. Late side effects can develop after months or even after years of treatment. Both late and long term, these side effects can be physical and emotional.

Keeping personal health records

Along with your doctor, you should develop a personalized follow-up care plan. Some patients, after the treatment, continue to see their oncologist, while others go back to the care of their family/primary care doctor. This depends on various factors such as type and stage, side effects, health insurance rules, personal preferences, beliefs and expectations.

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