Side Effects of Cancer Treatment

Sometimes it’s tough to separate the effect of cancer on your body and how the treatment is affecting you. This isn’t the time to be shy. Let your care team know if anything is bothering you, because they might be able to help. Here are some resources that touch on physical side effects people go through during cancer treatment, but don’t hesitate to call your doctor’s office if you are having a hard time.

More on this topic

  • Source: ChemoExperts
    This video highlights the many treatment options for nausea and vomiting and explains how prevention is an important first step.
  • Source: ChemoExperts
    Cancer treatment could slow down or throw off your digestion. If your side effects include constipation, this video describes options you can discuss with your doctor.
  • Source: ChemoExperts
    Sometimes cancer can cause blood clots, which can lead to serious problems. Medications can protect you—watch this video to know why your doctor wants you to follow through on this critical part of care.
  • Source: ChemoExperts
    Although it doesn't happen to everyone or with every type of therapy, you may experience or be concerned about the possibility of hair loss. This video describes strategies for minimizing drug-induced hair loss.
  • Author: Julie Revelant
    Side effects can be an uncomfortable part of treating cancer and can vary depending on the length and type of treatment you undergo. This article discusses how to cope with cancer treatment side effects in a healthy, open way with one’s cancer treatment team.
  • Author: Sarah Handzel, BSN, RN
    One common cancer side effect—sleep disturbance, or insomnia—affects as many as 60% of people living with cancer or undergoing cancer treatment. This article provides tips on how to sleep well during treatment.
  • Author: Lucy Maher
    Weight changes are an often unexpected side effect of receiving cancer treatment. Here, we offer tips to help you manage your weight in a healthy way.
  • Author: Julie Revelant
    When you have cancer, a healthy diet is important to help you stay strong, fight infection, and heal. Here are 6 common dietary side effects of cancer treatments and strategies to help manage these concerns.
  • Source: Cancer Support Community
    Stress and anxiety go hand-in-hand with a cancer diagnosis. Typically, people approach problems in 1 of 2 ways: actively working on them, or avoiding them. In general, active coping works better and is healthier.
  • Source: Cancer Support Community
    Cognitive changes are problems with thinking—including memory, concentration, and behavior. Not everyone who has chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery develops cognitive problems.
  • Source: Cancer Support Community
    Treatment for cancer—surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and targeted therapies—can cause pain and discomfort. If you begin experiencing new pain or severe pain, it is important that you tell your doctor immediately.
  • Source: CancerCare
    Palliative care (pronounced PAL-lee-uh-tiv) is medical care for people with serious illnesses. The goal is to relieve symptoms, pain, and stress in an effort to improve quality of life.
  • Source: CancerCare
    Many people going through cancer treatment notice changes in their memory and thinking abilities. Coping with symptoms of chemo-brain involves finding ways to help you remember things better.

Cancer.com collects information from respected sources and is not responsible for the creation of content, except as noted. The original source has granted permission to share this information on Cancer.com in an effort to provide you with the best information possible.

Unlock
My Care
Activator™

Get access to My Care Activator™, an exclusive support program to help with your unique challenges

Start Now

Support Tools

Helpful resources that can prepare you to take action are just one click away.

Support Tools