Cancer survivors are also at greater risk for developing second cancers and other health conditions. However, surviving cancer can leave a host of problems in its wake. Physical, emotional, and financial hardships often persist for years after diagnosis and treatment. The effects of surgery depend on the area of the body (or site) where the surgery is performed. Risks have been lessened by new and improved surgical methods but late effects may still occur. Late effects of surgery include:
Scarring at the surgical site, Problems fighting infection, Lymphedema or swelling of arms or legs, Nutritional problems, Cognitive problems such as trouble focusing or memory loss, Changes in sexual function or fertility, Pain that may be chronic or long term, Difficulty with speech or swallowing. Physical changes can also bring emotional aftereffects. This can happen even if others cannot see the changes. For example, a survivor could feel self-conscious about a scar, even if it is hidden by clothing. There may be concerns about body image.