Tiredness. Tiredness (fatigue) is one of the most common side effects of chemotherapy. Many people having treatment feel tired a lot of the time or get tired very easily doing everyday tasks.
What is the most life threatening side effect of chemotherapy?
Chemotherapy drugs kill cancer cells as well as healthy white blood cells. Since white blood cells are one of the body’s main defenses against infection, this means you have a higher risk of getting an infection while your white blood cell count is low.
What is the main issue with using chemotherapy to treat cancer?
Because cancer cells usually grow and divide faster than normal cells, chemotherapy has more of an effect on cancer cells. However, the drugs used for chemotherapy are powerful, and they can still cause damage to healthy cells. This damage causes the side effects that are linked with chemotherapy.
What are the most common side effects of cancer treatment?
What are the most common side effects of cancer treatments? Some of the most common side effects of cancer and its treatment include pain and fatigue, anemia, mouth problems, nausea/weight change/dietary issues, and hair, skin and nail problems.
Why does chemotherapy cause side effects?
Why does chemo cause side effects? Cancer cells tend to grow fast, and chemo drugs kill fast-growing cells. But because these drugs travel throughout the body, they can affect normal, healthy cells that are fast-growing, too. Damage to healthy cells causes side effects.
When does chemo side effects start?
Not everyone feels sick during or after chemotherapy, but if nausea affects you, it will usually start a few hours after treatment. Nausea may last for many hours and be accompanied by vomiting or retching. Sometimes nausea lasts for days after treatment.
What are the drawbacks of chemotherapy?
The side effects of chemotherapy include hair loss, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, anemia, infections, fatigue, loss of taste buds, and destruction of the immune system. Most chemotherapy operates on the principle that the most rapidly dividing cells will be the most susceptible to the drug.
Do chemo side effects get worse with each treatment?
Although there is no way to prevent chemotherapy side effects altogether, there are methods of managing them that can lessen their worst symptoms. Some of the more common side effects of chemotherapy may include: Fatigue. Vomiting and nausea.
What are the long term effects of chemotherapy?
What Are the Long-Term Side Effects of Chemotherapy?
- Cognitive difficulties.
- Hearing problems.
- Heart problems.
- Increased risk of blood cancers.
- Lung problems.
- Nerve damage.
- Reproductive changes.
What are the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation?
What Are Common Side Effects of Chemo and Radiation?
- Fatigue. Tiredness (fatigue) is the most common side effect of both chemotherapy and radiation. …
- Flu-like Symptoms. …
- Pain. …
- Mouth, Gum, and Throat Sores. …
- Gastrointestinal Problems. …
- Skin Changes. …
- Weight Changes. …
- Hair Loss.
Are chemo side effects cumulative?
The effects of chemo are cumulative. They get worse with each cycle. My doctors warned me: Each infusion will get harder. Each cycle, expect to feel weaker.
What happens after your last chemo treatment?
Side Effects After Chemotherapy
- Low blood counts. After your last dose of chemotherapy, your white blood cell count will go down. …
- Hair loss. …
- Neuropathy. …
- Nausea, vomiting, and taste changes. …
- Fatigue. …
- “Chemo brain” and stress. …
- Fear of cancer coming back.
What happens if you choose not to have chemotherapy?
If you decide to stop chemotherapy, be sure you’re still getting relief from symptoms such as pain, constipation, and nausea. This is called palliative care, and it’s meant to improve your quality of life. Medications and other treatments, such as radiation, are part of palliative care.
What is chemotherapy benefits and risks?
As well as killing cancer cells, chemotherapy can damage some healthy cells in your body, such as blood cells, skin cells and cells in the stomach. This can cause a range of unpleasant side effects, such as: feeling tired most of the time. feeling and being sick.
What is chemotherapy toxicity?
Chemotherapy drugs are used to treat cancer. However, while the purpose of chemotherapy medications is to reduce your cancer symptoms and lengthen your life, the drugs can also have unwanted effects on your body. Chemotherapy can poison your body and lead to harm, and this is known as chemotherapy toxicity.