Saturday, February 24, 2024

How Long Does Nausea Last After Radiation

Preparing For Your Simulation

What symptoms should I watch for after radiation?
  • During your simulation, you will be lying in one position for a long time. If you think you will be uncomfortable lying still, you can take acetaminophen or your usual pain medication before your simulation.
  • If you think you may get anxious during your procedure, ask your doctor if medication may be helpful.
  • Wear comfortable clothes that are easy to take off. You will need to change into a hospital gown.
  • Dont wear jewelry, powder, or lotion.

To help pass the time during your simulation, your radiation therapists can play music for you.

Depending on the area being treated, you may not be able to eat or drink before your simulation. Your doctor or nurse will talk with you about this.

Remove devices from your skin

The manufacturer recommends taking these devices off your skin before your simulation or treatment:

  • Continuous glucose monitor

If you use one of these, ask your radiation oncologist if you need to take it off. If you do, make sure to bring an extra device to put on after your simulation or treatment.

While your device is off, you may not be sure how to manage your glucose . Ask the healthcare provider who manages your diabetes care. Make sure to do this before your simulation or treatment appointment.

Delayed Nausea May Be Hard To Detect In Children

Unlike in adults, delayed nausea and vomiting in children may be harder for parents and caregivers to see. A change in the childs eating pattern may be the only sign of a problem. In addition, most chemotherapy treatments for children are scheduled over several days. This makes the timing and risk of delayed nausea unclear.

Studies on the prevention of delayed nausea and vomiting in children are limited. Children are usually treated the same way as adults, with doses of drugs that prevent nausea adjusted for age.

What The Patient Can Do

  • Rest, but not too much. Plan your day so you have time to rest. Take short naps or rest breaks , rather than one long nap during the day. Too much rest can lower your energy level and make it harder to sleep at night.
  • Certain drugs used to treat pain, nausea, or depression can make a person feel tired and sleepy. Talk with your cancer care team about this. Sometimes adjusting the doses or changing to a different drug can help.
  • Talk to your health care team about any problems with your nutritional intake
  • Regular moderate exercise especially walking is a good way to ease fatigue. Talk to your doctor about the right exercise plan for you.
  • Ask your family or friends to help with the things you find tiring or too hard to do.
  • Try to sleep 7 to 8 hours each night. Sleep experts tell us that having regular times to go to bed and get up helps us keep a healthy sleep routine.
  • Each day, prioritize decide which things are most important to you and focus on those tasks. Then plan ahead. Spread activities throughout the day and take breaks. Do things slowly, so that you wont use too much energy at once

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Can Sleep Be Improved To Reduce Cancer Fatigue

Sleep is an important part of wellness. Good sleep can improve your mental and physical health. Several factors contribute to how well you sleep, and there are things you can do to improve your sleep, including:

  • Doing relaxation exercises, meditation or relaxation yoga before going to sleep.
  • Avoiding long afternoon naps.
  • Going to bed only when sleepy. Use your bedroom only for sleep and sexual activities.
  • Setting a consistent time to lie down and get up.
  • Avoiding caffeine and stimulating activities in the evening.
  • Establishing a relaxing pre-sleep routine.

What Causes Nausea After Chemotherapy

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What causes nausea after chemotherapy is a question that haunts many people. Nausea after chemotherapy depends upon certain drugs related factors:

  • Type of chemotherapy drug applied upon the patient
  • Whether the patient is taking Chemotherapy simultaneously with other form of treatment like radiation.
  • The dose of the drugs (high doses of chemo is a common risk factor triggering nausea
  • Duration and intervals of Chemo Cycles as long intervals reduce the side effect between the time gaps
  • How the drugs are given if chemotherapy drugs are intravenous which trigger nausea more often and quick. It is only because the drugs absorbed faster through veins than that of the oral doses of chemotherapy drug.
  • Other drugs in use

What causes nausea after chemotherapy also depends upon some personal risk factors:

  • Every patient may not response similarly to a dose or type of chemotherapy
  • Patients with tumors in the brain are most prone to nausea after chemotherapy
  • Whether there was any medical history of nausea in the past.
  • Females are more prone to this side effect
  • Younger patients may face the side effect more often than the patient over 50 years
  • Those who have experienced morning sickness during pregnancy
  • Patients found anxious or nervous go through nausea
  • Patients who had past history of motion sickness develop nauseous tendency
  • Prone to vomiting in any common sickness like indigestion, fever etc.
  • People who are alcoholic to some extent undergo nauseous tendency

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What You Can Do About Cancer

  • be aware of your own warning signs of fatigue, for example, a loss of appetite, low mood, difficulty concentrating
  • help others to understand and let them support you
  • talk to family/whnau and friends, and dont be afraid to ask for help
  • pace yourself, think about your energy levels and balance activity and rest
  • if you need time to rest during the day, dont be afraid to say no to visitors
  • have lots of nutritious snacks and meals
  • regular moderate exercise can help with tiredness and a lack of energy

Weekly Visits During Your Treatment

Your radiation oncologist and nurse will see you each week to ask you about any side effects youre having, talk with you about your concerns, and answer your questions. This visit will be before or after your treatments each ________________. You should plan to be at your appointment for about 1 extra hour on those days.

If you need to speak with your radiation oncologist or radiation nurse between these weekly visits, call your radiation oncologists office. You can also ask the support staff or your radiation therapists to contact your radiation oncologist or nurse when you come in for treatment.

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Why Does Radiation Therapy Cause Side Effects

In this type of treatment, high doses of radiation therapy are used to destroy cancer cells. Side effects come from damage to healthy cells and tissues near the treatment area.

There have been major research advances in radiation therapy over recent years that have made it more precise. This has reduced this treatment’s side effects compared to radiation therapy techniques used in the past.

Some people experience few or no side effects from radiation therapy. Other people experience more severe side effects. Reactions to radiation therapy often start during the second or third week of treatment. Or, they may last for several weeks after the final treatment. Some side effects may be long term. Talk with your treatment team about what you can expect.

What Is Radiation Recall

What to Expect When Receiving Radiation Therapy Treatment

Radiation recall is a rash that looks like a severe sunburn. It is rare but it can happen when certain types of chemotherapy are given during or soon after external-beam radiation therapy.

The rash appears on the part of the body that received radiation therapy. Symptoms may include redness, tenderness, swelling, wet sores, and peeling skin.

Typically, these effects start within days or weeks of starting radiation therapy. But they can also appear months or years later. Doctors treat radiation recall with medications called corticosteroids. Rarely, it may be necessary to wait until the skin heals to continue with chemotherapy.

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Pain Or Difficulty Swallowing Heartburn Or Upset Stomach

If your esophagus is in the area being treated, you may have trouble swallowing or pain when you swallow. If your stomach is in the area being treated, you may have heartburn or an upset stomach. These side effects often start during your second or third week of treatment. They can last for up to 2 weeks after you finish treatment.

Its important to manage these side effects so you can eat, drink, and get enough nutrition during your treatment. You can take liquid supplements if you arent eating enough food. There are many products available, and they come in a variety of flavors. Speak with your doctor or nurse about how to select the one that will be best for you. You can also ask to make an appointment with a dietitian if you need help with your diet.

Tell your doctor or nurse if youre having any of these side effects. They will give you medication to help. You can also follow the guidelines below.

If youre having pain or trouble swallowing:

  • Avoid foods and drinks that may irritate your esophagus, such as:
  • Very hot foods and fluids
  • Dry, hard, and coarse foods
  • Acidic or citrus foods and juices
  • Foods and drinks with caffeine
  • Take small bites of food and chew well before you swallow.
  • Eat soft, moist, or puréed foods. These foods may be easier to swallow. You can also try adding sauces and gravies to foods.
  • Eat and drink cold foods and liquids to help soothe your throat. Some people find that fruit nectars are particularly soothing.
  • If youre having heartburn:

    Are There Options To Prevent Or Treat Side Effects Caused By Radiation Therapy

    Yes. Your health care team can help you prevent or relieve many side effects. Preventing and treating side effects is an important part of your overall cancer treatment. This is called palliative care or supportive care.

    Before treatment begins, ask what side effects are likely from the specific type of treatment you are receiving and when they may happen. During and after treatment, let your health care team know how you are feeling on a regular basis. This includes if you are experiencing a new side effect, or a problem persists or has gotten worse.

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    Can A Dietitian Help Me Fight Cancer Fatigue

    Dietitians can provide suggestions to work around any symptoms that may be interfering with caloric intake. They can help you find ways to take in calories despite an early feeling of fullness, swallowing difficulty or taste changes. Dietitians can also suggest ways of maximizing calories and proteins in smaller amounts of food. They may suggest powdered milk, instant breakfast drinks and other commercial supplements or food additives.

    When Do Radiation And Chemotherapy Side Effects Start

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    You may experience side effects within a few hours of treatment as is the case with certain chemotherapy treatments that gradually begin to improve. Or you may not experience side effects until youve completed several treatment sessions, as is sometimes the case with radiation. Talk to your healthcare provider about when youre most likely to experience side effects based on your treatment type and schedule.

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    If Youre Having Radiation Therapy To The Pelvis

    Radiation therapy to the pelvis can cause side effects such as:

    • Bladder problems
    • Fertility problems
    • Changes in your sex life

    You might also have some of the same problems people get from radiation to the abdomen, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation.

    Bladder problems

    Radiation to the pelvis can cause problems with urination, including:

    • Pain or burning sensations
    • Blood in the urine
    • An urge to urinate often

    Most of these problems get better over time, but radiation therapy can cause longer-term side effects as well:

    • Radiation cystitis. If the radiation damages the lining of the bladder, radiation cystitis can be a long-term problem that causes blood in the urine or pain when passing urine.
    • Urinary incontinence. Radiation treatments for certain cancers, such as prostate and bladder cancer, may make you unable to control your urine or have leakage or dribbling. There are different types and degrees of incontinence, but it can be treated. Even if incontinence cant be corrected completely, it can still be helped. See Bladder and Bowel Incontinence to learn more. This side effect is most often a problem for men being treated for prostate cancer, but some of the information might also be helpful for women dealing with treatment-related incontinence.

    How Cancer Treatment Causes Fatigue

    Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, surgery, hormone therapy, immunotherapythese treatments and their common side effects challenge the body, and the body needs energy to recover.

    When you start a new treatment, the body produces cytokines to help boost the immune response. When cells die, the body works to clean up those dying cells, causing inflammation. Its a desirable response in this case, but inflammationboth acute and chronicalso causes fatigue.

    You can compare this fatigue to how you feel when your body fights the flu or another infection, like COVID-19. While your bodys working hard to fight the infection, you feel tired.

    How and when you experience fatigue from cancer treatment may vary according to the treatment youre receiving and its side effects.

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    How Fertility Might Be Affected

    For women: Talk to your cancer care team about how radiation might affect your fertility . Its best to do this before starting treatment so you are aware of possible risks to your fertility.

    Depending on the radiation dose, women getting radiation therapy in the pelvic area sometimes stop having menstrual periods and have other symptoms of menopause. Report these symptoms to your cancer care and ask them how to relieve these side effects.Sometimes menstrual periods will return when radiation therapy is over, but sometimes they do not.

    See Fertility and Women With Cancer to learn more.

    For men: Radiation therapy to an area that includes the testicles can reduce both the number of sperm and their ability to function. If you want to father a child in the future and are concerned about reduced fertility, talk to your cancer care team before starting treatment. One option may be to bank your sperm ahead of time.

    See Fertility and Men With Cancer to learn more.

    How Is Cancer Fatigue Managed Or Treated

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    The first step in treating fatigue is knowing the problem exists. Many people donât bother to mention fatigue to their doctors because they believe it is normal. Itâs vital that you discuss this and all symptoms or side effects with your healthcare provider. Then, efforts can be directed at determining the cause of the problem and prescribing appropriate treatment. Your particular cancer treatment regimen, with its known side effects, may provide clues for your doctor or health care professional. A simple blood test, for example, can determine if you are anemic.

    There is no single medication available to treat fatigue. However, there are medications available that can treat some of the underlying causes.

    When youre struggling, you may want to see a palliative care specialist. These experts help people with cancer manage symptoms like pain, nausea and depression.

    Your provider or palliative care team may recommend these actions to ease fatigue:

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    Anticipatory Nausea And Vomiting May Occur After Several Chemotherapy Treatments

    In some patients, after they have had several courses of treatment, nausea and vomiting may occur before a treatment session. This is called anticipatory nausea and vomiting. It is caused by triggers, such asodors in the therapy room. For example, a person who beginschemotherapy and smells an alcohol swab at the same time may later havenausea and vomiting at the smell of an alcohol swab. The more chemotherapy sessions a patient has, the more likely it is that anticipatory nausea and vomiting will occur.

    Having three or more of the following may make anticipatory nausea and vomiting more likely:

    • Having nausea and vomiting, or feeling warm or hot after the last chemotherapy session.
    • Being younger than 50 years.
    • A history of motion sickness.
    • Having a high level of anxiety in certain situations.

    Other factors that may make anticipatory nausea and vomiting more likely include:

    • Expecting to have nausea and vomiting before a chemotherapy treatment begins.
    • Doses and types of chemotherapy .
    • Feeling dizzy or lightheaded after chemotherapy.
    • How often chemotherapy is followed by nausea.
    • Having delayed nausea and vomiting after chemotherapy.
    • A history of morning sickness during pregnancy.

    What Kind Of Skin Problems Can Radiation Therapy Cause

    The way external radiation therapy affects your skin is similar to what happens when you spend time in the sun. It may look red, sunburned, or tanned. It may also get swollen or blistered. Your skin may also become dry, flaky, or itchy. Or it may start to peel.

    Be gentle with your skin:

    • Don’t wear tight clothing over the area that’s being treated.
    • Don’t scrub or rub your skin. To clean it, use a mild soap and let lukewarm water run over it.
    • Avoid putting anything hot or cold on the area unless the doctor tells you to.
    • Ask your doctor before you use any type of ointment, oil, lotion, or powder on your skin.
    • Ask about using corn starch to help relieve itching.
    • Stay out of the sun as much as possible. Cover the area getting radiation with clothing or hats to protect it. Ask the doctor about using sunscreen if you must be outdoors.
    • If youâre having radiation therapy for breast cancer, try not to wear a bra. If that isn’t possible, wear a soft, cotton one without underwire.
    • Don’t use any tape, gauze, or bandages on your skin unless the doctor tells you to.

    Your skin should start to feel better a few weeks after therapy ends. But when it heals, it may be a darker color. And youâll still need to protect yourself from the sun even after radiation therapy has ended.

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