As a caregiver, it's natural for you to want to be there for your loved one who has ALK+ NSCLC. Sometimes, you may even end up putting your own needs on hold. As you care for your loved one, it's important to remember that before you can take care of someone else, you must also care for yourself.
Become Your Loved One's Eyes and Ears
Are you accompanying your loved one to appointments? If so, it might be helpful to take notes, ask questions, and meet the doctor and healthcare team.
Throughout treatment, your loved one will receive a lot of information. Consider keeping a folder or binder to help you and your loved one keep track of medications, insurance information, appointments, test results, and questions to ask the doctor.
If you notice your loved one is acting differently, let the doctor know.
Some of the most common side effects of LORBRENA include swelling in the arms, legs, hands, and feet (edema); numbness and tingling feeling in the joints or arms and legs (peripheral neuropathy); difficulty thinking or confusion; difficulty breathing; tiredness (fatigue); weight gain; pain in the joints; changes in mood, feeling sad or anxious; and diarrhea.
Caregivers and Patients Are in It Together
Whether you've become a caregiver gradually or suddenly, simple strategies and tools can help you and your loved one navigate the path ahead as a team. Here are some ways to be there for your loved one:
Household care: Prepare meals, offer to do laundry, or run errands (like grocery shopping).
Health care: Pick up prescriptions, help schedule doctor visits, and take notes at visits.
Emotional care: Listen, provide companionship, share stories, or enjoy a fun activity together, like watching a movie or going for a walk.
ALK=anaplastic lymphoma kinase; NSCLC=non-small cell lung cancer.