Dramatic improvements in the management of side effects – including pain, nausea, and infection – have radically improved the quality of life for patients undergoing cancer treatment.
Major advances include the development of potent anti-nausea drugs, which enable most cancer patients to receive chemotherapy in an outpatient setting with minimal disruption to their daily routines. Pain management has also improved, along with recognition and treatment of emotional distress related to a patient's cancer diagnosis. Addressing quality of life issues is now considered an integral part of quality cancer care, as are support services for patients and families.
With record numbers of cancer survivors, programs have likewise been designed to ensure that medical monitoring and guidance needed to remain healthy are provided after treatment ends.