There may be times throughout cancer treatment when you experience symptoms that concern you. These symptoms might be related to cancer itself or result from treatment. Either way, you want help — and you want it quickly.
We created our Cancer Symptom Quick Care Clinic for just that reason. In many cases, a phone call or visit with our clinic oncologists can relieve your concerns and help you avoid a trip to the emergency department.
How the Cancer Symptom Quick Care Clinic Can Help
If you are undergoing cancer treatment, you may experience unexpected and unusual symptoms. But visiting the emergency department could expose you to illness or even result in unnecessary hospitalization.
A better option for help with non-life-threatening symptoms is to call our Cancer Symptom Quick Care Clinic. This service is exclusively for Memorial Cancer Institute patients and their caregivers.
You or your caregivers can call our cancer experts to get fast care for cancer-related symptoms. We also have oncologists on call to answer questions when your primary oncologist is not available.
The clinic is open Monday–Friday, 8 am–5 pm. If you call after hours, a call service will take your message, and a medical oncologist will return your call.
When to Call About Cancer Symptoms and Side Effects
If you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, call 911 right away.
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, call our Cancer Symptom Quick Care Clinic:
- Abdominal pain
- Active bleeding
- Appetite decrease (significant)
- Breathing difficulty (rapid or shortness of breath)
- Chemotherapy spills at home
- Confusion, change in mental status, hallucinations
- Cough with mucus
- Diarrhea for more than 3 days
- Dry mouth
- Eye discharge
- Fever of 100.4 degrees or higher
- Inability to walk
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Heart rate above 100 or less than 60 beats per minute
- Headache (sudden onset and severe)
- Moderate to severe pain (described as 4 to 10 on a 10-point scale)
- Nausea or vomiting
- Numbness and tingling of fingers and toes
- Rash (new)
- Swallowing difficulties, drooling or facial/neck/tongue swelling
- Sweating (profuse)
- Swelling of the legs or arms
- Urination pain, inability to urinate, significantly decreased urine output, or increased frequency or urgency
- Any other symptom that requires urgent attention
Urgent Care for Cancer Symptoms and Cancer Treatment Side Effects
Our cancer experts are ready to listen to your cancer-related symptoms and offer suggestions to help you feel better. After talking with you or your caregiver on the phone, we will recommend one of four actions:
- Guidance for care at home
- A telehealth visit
- Go to the Quick Care Clinic
- Go to your closest hospital emergency department