Q. I have a very rare cancer, and it is called well-differentiated neuroendocrine tumor (carcinoid). I have been told there is not a cure for this type of cancer, but I am hoping to find a support group (or people to chat or do activities with). Can you help me?

A.

A support group can be a wonderful way to find social connection, resources and information from others going through similar experiences. Although your cancer is rare, there are still excellent supportive resources available.

CancerCare offers a free, private online support group for individuals in treatment for carcinoid and neuroendocrine tumors This message-board style group is moderated by an oncology social worker, and is available 24/7 during the group cycle. To learn more and register, please visit the support group page.

There are other organizations that provide excellent support as well. The Carcinoid Cancer Foundation has patient forums in addition to other services like resource referrals, education and advocacy. The Rare Cancer Alliance offers patient forums geared towards those with rare conditions; they offer one for those diagnosed with carcinoid tumors and one for those with neuroendocrine tumors. Similarly, the Association of Cancer Online Resources (ACOR) hosts groups through an email listserv, including a Carcinoid Cancer Group.

You may also want to explore “peer-matching” services offered by organizations like Cancer Hope Network, Imerman Angels and WhatNext. They work to match patients with one-to-one support provided by those with a similar cancer history.

Finally, CancerCare offers a number of general face-to-face, telephone, and online support groups that may meet your needs. To learn more about our current offerings and how to register, you can contact our Hopeline at 800-813-HOPE (4673) to speak to one of our professional oncology social workers.

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