Caring for someone with cancer
posted by Estherm
29 November 2020

Caring for someone recovering from surgery for a brain tumour

Last reply: 5 months ago

My partner has recently had surgery for a brain tumour and we're waiting for the biopsy results.
The consultant has said he's 90-95% sure that the tumour is malignant.
Since my partner came home from hospital, I have noticed changes in his personality and attention span, ability to find words etc. He is in good form in general, but at times he fixates on certain things such as trying to sort out his affairs, or the fact that he was told he probably won't be able to work again. He can get very anxious, which is understandable.
Does anyone have any advice on how to respond to these situations?
Also, I work from home and had only been a month in the job when he got the diagnosis.
My instinct is telling me that I should take time off to care for my partner asap. We'll be facing into radiotherapy and chemo after Christmas and in the meantime I want to be there for him. I could potentially work part time until Christmas but to be honest, I don't think I can focus on work at all at the moment.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards,



commented by Cancer Nurse
08 December 2020

5 months ago

Dear Esther,


I’m very sorry to read that your partner has had surgery for a brain tumour, it is understandable for both of you to feel worried with all that is happening, you have a lot going on especially after starting a new job a month before he got his diagnosis.  There is counselling available for both yourself and your partner to help cope with what is happening.

After surgery, there may be changes to attention and personality, this can be very distressing to see but it usually gets better with recovery, your partners doctor or their nurse specialist may be able to give you a better idea of what to expect for your partners recovery.  With your work it can be difficult to make a decision whether to take time off or to continue working, we always recommend to speak with your employer about your situation.  Every situation is unique, we recommend to do what works best for you.  I have attached a link here to the citizens information with information about benefits that may be a useful tool to help make your decision.

Please don’t hesitate to call our support line on 1800 200 700 if you would like to speak with a cancer nurse for any advice or support, we are open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.  We wish your partner the very best in his recovery from surgery and his treatment after Christmas.


Kind regards,


Cancer nurse.

commented by BeckyBuckley98
09 December 2020

5 months ago

My brother was recently diagnosed with spine cancer but it has spread to his brain. This cancer is now terminal so when he fixates on one thing or gets annoyed about something we encourage him to do it instead of saying that it is dangerous. My mother is nurse and has taken the last three months off work to care for my brother in his final stages , you should definitely speak to your manager about work and hopefully they will accommodate you

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