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Useful resources

The Clinical Psychology department based at the Bristol Haematology & Oncology Centre have produced a range of booklets and films designed to help patients before, during and after their cancer treatment.  All of them are available from the Cancer Information and Support Centre. In addition, you can download them from the links below. 


These booklets are in PDF format and can be printed out at home or read on your computer screen.

  • Overcoming stress and anxiety 
    One of the most common emotions felt by people with cancer is fear or anxiety. This booklet is designed to help you understand both why we feel anxiety and, more importantly, what we can do to control it. The booklet refers to relaxation exercises which also can be downloaded (please see below). These self-help methods of controlling anxiety have been shown, through many research studies, to be extremely effective. 
  • Managing the stress of cancer
    This booklet is concerned with what people go through after they have been diagnosed with cancer and how they manage the stress of this difficult time. It is based upon what patients say they find difficult and what they have found helpful. It is also based on sound psychological theory and research.
  • Overcoming insomnia
    About one in three people with cancer report sleeping difficulties (insomnia) at some point during their treatment.  This workbook teaches you about sleep, helps you identify possible causes for your insomnia, and suggests a number of ways to improve your sleep patterns.








These MP3 audio files can be listened to on a computer which has a soundcard and speakers, and also downloaded.

Relaxation Exercises
Before doing these exercises please read the booklet Overcoming Stress and Anxiety - A Self-Help Guide. There is a short introduction to the exercises and the choice of a male voice or a female voice taking you through the various exercises.  Please note that you should only do the exercises on this tape which feel comfortable. They should not strain any muscles or hurt when you do them. 
Relaxation (male voice)
Relaxation (female voice) 


Living with cancer

These are a series of 8 short films about various aspects of having cancer. In many ways they explore the same ground as the booklet Managing the Stress of Cancer but the films themselves involve people who have had cancer telling you what it was like for them and what they found helpful.  As you will see, there is not one way of dealing with the challenges we are faced with when we have cancer, but watching these films may help you to realise that you are not alone in what you are feeling.


Preparing for chemotherapy

This 20 minute film was made by patients and staff at the Bristol Haematology & Oncology Centre so that patients and family members would have a better idea of what chemotherapy is and the different ways it may be administered.  Many people are alarmed at the very thought of having chemotherapy.  No film can tell you exactly what it will be like for you but, by finding out a bit more about it, you will hopefully feel better informed, more prepared and less worried.



This dvd has been produced to help and reassure those patients who have been referred for Radiotherapy.  The patients featured in the main sections of the DVD are all NHS staff volunteers.  The patient interview section at the end of the DVD comprises the thoughts of three patients who have all completed their radiotherapy treatment at the Bristol Oncology Centre.  We hope that the information contained in this DVD will help to reassure you before you commence your treatment, and will help you to feel more at home with the people, terminology and equipment used in radiotherapy.

One of a Kind

One of a Kind is the award-winning animated film that was the idea of Jancis Kinsman, Advanced Practice Therapy Radiographer at the Bristol Haemotology & Oncology Centre (BHOC). The film involved children who received radiotherapy at the BHOC and then took part in an Aardman animation to show others what it is like to have the treatment.

Jancis said: I felt that a short animated film with characters that young children could identify with was the best way to communicate to them what it is like to have radiotherapy. The film is a valuable tool for preparing children and their families for radiotherapy and complements the wonderful work already done by specialist paediatric radiographers, oncologists and play specialists around the country.  


Should you have any feedback about any of these materials, please let us know by writing to:

The Clinical Psychology Department
Bristol Haematology & Oncology Centre
Horfield Road
Bristol BS2 8ED

Advisors from the Citizen's Advice Bureau are available with advice on benefits.

Find out more at the Cancer Information and Support Centre.

Other information providing high quality, up-to-date cancer information for cancer patients, their families and carers is available from Macmillan Cancer Support and a glossary of commonly used terms in cancer from Cancer Help UK.