- When Cancer Comes Back: Cancer Recurrence
- What is cancer recurrence?
- What are the types of recurrence?
- Could I have done something to prevent the recurrence?
- Common questions about cancer recurrence
- When cancer recurs
- Treating recurrence
- What happens if treatment is no longer working?
- How do people cope emotionally when cancer recurs?
- “Is having a positive attitude important in fighting the cancer? My friends say it is, but I feel sad and discouraged.
- What about the “why” questions?
- Get support
- Treating cancer as a chronic illness
- To learn more
What are the types of recurrence?
There are different types of cancer recurrence:
- Local recurrence means that the cancer has come back in the same place it first started.
- Regional recurrence means that the cancer has come back in the lymph nodes near the place it started.
- Distant recurrence means the cancer has come back in another part of the body, some distance from where it started (often the lungs, liver, bone marrow, or brain).
If you have a cancer recurrence, your doctor can give you the best information about what type of recurrence you have and what it means to have that type. You will also want to find out your options for treatment and outlook (prognosis). See the section, “Treating recurrence.”
Last Medical Review: 05/13/2013
Last Revised: 06/19/2013