Cancer is a life-threatening disease that brings a lot of difficulties in one’s life. However, when cancer is diagnosed in its initial stage, it doesn’t cause as many problems and gets treated easily. But when cancer reaches its final stage, it brings severe life risks. Cancer extremities treatment also causes some side effects. Targeted therapy medicines possess different side effects than traditional or standard chemotherapy. A few targeted therapy drugs have very few side effects, and others can bring some more critical problems. There are several different kinds of targeted therapy drugs, and their side effects depend broadly on the type of drug provided and what it targets.
What Do I Need to Know About the Side Effects?
Not every patient experiences every side effect, and a few people experience few or none. How critical cancer side effects might be/can differ broadly from medicine to medicine and from individual to individual. Make sure you speak to your cancer treatment staff about which side effects are most general with your medication and treatment, what are the long-term side effects of chemotherapy, how worst they might be, and when you need to call the doctor and speak about them. Your healthcare provider may provide you instructions to follow or prescribe drugs to prevent a few side effects before they happen.
Unusual and rare side effects can happen with a few of these drugs, and some can be severe. Communicate all side effects and changes in your body as soon as possible to your cancer care staff.
Late Effects of Cancer Treatment
Even if your cancer treatment is completed, the treatment processes that have protected you may also keep causing side effects. As more cancer survivors live longer after cancer treatment, more is becoming known about the post-stage side effects of cancer treatment. Below are all the late side effects of cancer treatment you need to know about. You need to use this information to manage your health.
Late side effects of cancer treatment become clear once your treatment gets over. Cancer patients might get the late side effects of cancer treatment years later.
|Late effects unknown at this time
|Late effects unknown at this time
Cancer and its treatment can cause several side effects. Long-term side effects of BCG treatment for bladder cancer, long term side effects of radiation treatment for cervical cancer are problems that occur when cancer treatment influences healthy cells or organs. Speak up about any issues you are experiencing. Your cancer care team can cure and conversate with you about methods to minimize these side effects so that you can feel better.
Here is the list of symptoms that you may experience after completing cancer treatment:
- Appetite Loss
- Bleeding and Bruising (Thrombocytopenia)
- Edema (Swelling)
- Infertility in Boys and Men
- Flu-kind Symptoms
- Hair Loss (Alopecia)
- Fertility Issues in Girls and Women
- Infection and Neutropenia
- Memory or Concentration Problems
- Mouth and Throat Problems
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Immunotherapy and Organ-Related Inflammation
- Nerve Problems (Peripheral Neuropathy)
- Sexual Health Issues in Men
- Sexual Health Problems in Women
- Skin and Nail Changes
- Urinary and Bladder Problems
- Sleep Problems
Remember that side effects of cancer treatment vary from patient to patient, even among individuals receiving the same kind of cancer treatment. A lot of people who have undergone cancer treatment hold a risk of experiencing long-term side effects. These long-term side effects can be seen months or years later after treatment. Assessing and treating late side effects is a necessary part of cancer survivorship care.
Types of Late Effects
Remember, that almost any/ every kind of cancer treatment can cause late effects. And different cancer treatments such as side effects of colon cancer treatment, breast cancer radiation treatment side effects, testicular cancer treatment side effects, side effects of hifu prostate cancer treatment can bring varied late consequences. Below we are providing a list of the more general types of late effects. Speak to your health care provider about any worries you have about a particular late effect. Keep reading to know the side effects of cancer treatment.
Difficulties from Surgery
Late side effects from surgery based on the kind of cancer treatment you are getting:
- Survivors of Hodgkin lymphoma, mainly those detected before 1988, typically had their spleens taken out. The spleen is a major organ of the immune system. Detaching it is connected with a greater risk of infections.
- Survivors of soft-tissue and bone cancers may lose part or the entire limb. This can introduce emotional and physical effects. One instance is phantom limb agony. Rehabilitation can aid survivors in coping with physical changes from cancer treatment.
- Survivors who have had cancer treatment surgery or radiation therapy to detach lymph nodes may occur lymphedema. Lymph nodes are small, bean-resembling parts that aid in fighting infection. Lymphedema occurs when lymph fluid develops and causes inflammation and pain.
- Survivors who had specific surgeries in the abdomen or pelvis area may not be able to conceive babies. This condition is known as infertility.
Both radiation therapy and chemotherapy to the chest can introduce heart problems. When we think about the side effects of cancer treatment chemotherapy strikes our mind as this therapy has higher side effects than other kinds of cancer treatment.
A few cancer survivors may develop a higher risk. This involves people who:
- Have undergone Hodgkin lymphoma treatment in their childhood
- Are 65 and above
- Received more doses of chemotherapy drugs
- Obtained specific drugs, such as doxorubicin (Doxil, Adriamycin) and trastuzumab (Ogivri, Herceptin)
Here we are giving a list of the most common heart conditions. Ask your health care provider right away if you develop any of these symptoms:
- Coronary artery illness is a kind of heart condition. It is more typically found in those who received extremely high doses of radiation therapy to the chest. Symptoms involve shortness of breath and chest pain.
- Congestive heart failure (CHF) is the enfeebling of the heart nerves. Symptoms consist of dizziness, shortness of breath, and inflamed feet or hands.
- Arrhythmia is a condition of a non-uniform heartbeat. Symptoms include chest pain, lightheadedness, and shortness of breath.
Name of the drugs that are responsible for causing heart problems:
- Daunorubicin (Cerubidine)
- Epirubicin (Ellence)
- Osimertinib (Tagrisso)
- Cyclophosphamide (Genoxal, Cytoxan)
Consult your doctor or healthcare provider if the cancer treatments you are getting can influence your heart. They may analyze your heart function and look for harm during and post-cancer treatment. Your healthcare provider may make use of a test termed echocardiography, also known as an echo. Other heart checkups may involve an electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG), a physical examination, and a multigated acquisition scan (MUGA).
Hypertension is a condition that is also known as high blood pressure. It may occur along with CHF. Or it may be a different side effect. If you experience hypertension, your doctor may look at it more closely while treating cancer. Increased hypertension is when blood pressure instantly and speedily rises. It typically causes harm to organs. So, it is crucial to seek medical help right away.
A few cancer drugs may cause high blood pressure conditions. Instances of these drugs comprise:
- Sorafenib (Nexavar)
- Bevacizumab (Avastin, Mvasi)
The chances of high blood pressure are reduced when a person stops consuming these medicines. But its long-term effects are unknown. Survivors with a higher risk for high BP should consult their cancer care team to reduce this risk. It may include examining blood pressure, consuming less salt, losing weight, taking medicine, and being active.
Radiation therapy and chemotherapy to the chest may harm the lungs. Cancer survivors who get both radiation therapy and chemotherapy may include a higher risk of lung damage. People who have had lung illness and the elderly may have more lung issues.
Medicine that may cause lung damage to incorporate:
- Carmustine (Becenum, BiCNU, Carmubris)
- Bleomycin (Blexane)
- Methotrexate (multiple brand names)
The late effects to the lungs may include:
- Thickening of the lining of the lungs
- A change in lung functioning.
- Inflammation of the lungs
- Problem in breathing
Several cancer treatments may cause menopausal symptoms in women. These treatments include:
- Surgery to remove a woman’s ovaries
- Hormone therapy
- Radiation therapy to the pelvic area
Hormone problems for men
A few treatments may cause males to have symptoms similar to menopause. These comprise hormone therapy for surgery or prostate cancer to remove the testicles. Symptoms may comprise:
- Change in sexual desire
- Hot flashes
When we think of the side effects of cancer, radiation therapy has very few later consequences. Cancer treatments that influence genital organs or the endocrine system raise the risk of being sterile. Infertility is a term being used when a person cannot become a mother or father of a child. At times infertility caused due to cancer treatment remains for a short time. But sometimes, it lasts forever.
Hormone issues from head and neck radiation therapy
When it comes to the late effects of radiation therapy on the head and neck site, it causes a reduction in hormone quantity. It can also bring some variations to the thyroid gland.
The human body may introduce cognitive issues for children and adults. Cognitive problems occur when an individual has difficulty in processing information. Ask your doctor or healthcare provider if you face any of these problems.
Vision Problems and Dental and Oral Health
Based on their treatments, people who have had cancer treatment may develop dental and oral health issues and eyesight problems. People also ask what are the long-term side effects of chemotherapy. So, dive in below to learn more:
- Chemotherapy may influence tooth enamel and raise the chances of developing long-term dental issues.
- Steroid drugs may maximize the risk of vision problems. This incorporates clouding of the eye that influences eyesight, known as cataracts.
- Extreme doses of radiation therapy to the head and neck site may bring variation in tooth development. It can also cause gum disease and minimize saliva building, causing a parched mouth.
The Spinal Cord, Brain, and Nerve Problems
Long-term side effects of radiation therapy include the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. These include:
- Permanent hearing loss comes under the late effects of chemotherapy, particularly medicines like cisplatin (various brand names)
- Maximized risk of brain stroke due to extreme doses of radiation therapy
- Nervous system side effects, including harm to the muscles outside the spinal cord and brain known as peripheral neuropathy
Survivors who fight cancer should have frequent physical checkups and hearing examinations after receiving cancer treatment to keep an eye on these effects.
Cancer survivors often have various positive and negative emotions:
- Fear of recurrence
- A sense of gratitude to be alive
- Feeling lonely
Radiation therapy cures several kinds of cancer efficiently. But similar to other cancer treatments, it generally brings side effects. These side effects are based on the type of cancer, its size, location, the radiation therapy dose, your overall health, and other relevant factors. It is necessary to consult your healthcare staff about any kind of side effects you face so they can find methods to treat you. If you search online for side effects of cancer treatment pdf, you won’t see as much information as this blog includes.
If you have recently received cancer treatment, chances are you may experience some or any of these cancer treatment side effects. However, these side effects depend entirely on the kind of therapy you are receiving and the person getting these therapies. If you are experiencing any side effects, consider contacting University Cancer Centres and get a better treatment for your disease and post-treatment consequences.