A member of the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance Network

Managing Side Effects

Your cancer treatment may include surgery, chemotherapy, and/or radiation in some combination. These treatments can cause various side effects, and managing side effects is an important part of your care.

Surgery often requires time to recover, and may have possible side effects such as lymphedema (swelling in the arms and legs), pain, fatigue, and other physical symptoms.  

Most people who go through chemotherapy and radiation experience some side effects as well. Common ones include pain, fatigue, memory problems, hair loss, skin problems, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Some people who have certain treatments have problems sleeping, urinating, and performing sexually. Side effects usually go away when treatment ends, though some may last longer.

Your care team will help you manage side effects. They can also provide you tools to help manage any stress and anxiety, which can make side effects worse.

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