Cancer Treatments, Insights and Other Musings -

Embarrassing Symptoms And Side Effects of Cancer And Treatments

by Jane Ashley

We’ve all learned firsthand that some of our symptoms and side effects are embarrassing. Sometimes, we don’t tell our doctors because we’re just too embarrassed.

Always Tell Your Doctor The Truth

There’s an old saying, “Always tell the truth to your doctors and your lawyer.” The reason is simple — they can’t help us if we hedge on the truth. Hiding our symptoms won’t make what’s wrong with us go away. As we have already learned, cancer doesn’t pick convenient locations.

Trust me when I tell you, “Our doctors have heard it...

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Tomotherapy and Halcyon - 2 Types of Radiation

by Jane Ashley

When most people think of cancer treatment, they think of chemotherapy as the treatment. Many people don’t even realize that radiation is one of the “three legs of the stool” when it comes to treating cancer. 

Tomo Therpay With Patient

The three legs are:
• Chemotherapy and other medications
• Radiation
• Surgery

At least half of all cancer patients receive radiotherapy as their primary treatment or radiation as part of their treatment. Radiation may be part of a cure or can be used as a palliative treatment to...

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5 Ways Cancer Affects Your Mouth And Dental Health

by Derek Edison

Cancer has, for a long time, been a pandemic among humans. What most people don't know is that a considerable number of cancer patients often end up with dental health problems before, during, and after treatment. Cancer is a severe and sometimes fatal disease, and people often ignore anything minor to focus on their cancer treatment plan. 

5 Ways Cancer Affects Your Mouth And Dental

It is, however, not a good idea to let your dental health get worse since this may lead to more complications. In such a scenario, the...

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Your Sense of Taste While on Chemo

by Jane Ashley

One of the big complaints among many cancer patients on chemotherapy or having radiation therapy is that food doesn’t taste the same. Some say that food tastes “funny.” Others complain that their favorite “comfort foods” don’t taste the same. 

Brush Your Teeth

Our sense of taste recognizes sweet, sour, bitter and sweet, but cancer treatment can affect our sense of taste. Common taste changes include:

• Your favorite foods taste bland.
• Sweet, salty or bitter foods taste different.
• Everything tastes...

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Coping With Pain During and After Cancer

by Jane Ashley

All of us look forward to our treatments ending. We think that that we will have an uneventful return to normal life. But for some cancer patients, they suffer from pain after treatment as a late side-effect of their cancer treatment.

Pain

The causes of chronic pain are as varied as are the diagnoses. These are the leading causes of pain in cancer survivors.
Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy
Pain after head and neck cancers
Post-mastectomy pain

Oncologists estimate that about one-third of...

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Coping With Radiation Side Effects

by Jane Ashley

Many newly diagnosed cancer patients are surprised to learn that radiation will be part of their treatment. When most people think about cancer treatment, they automatically think of chemotherapy.

External Beam Radiation National Cancer Institute

Yet over half of all cancer patients will receive radiation as part of their treatment regimen. Radiation therapy is considered an essential part of curative treatment for brain, breast, cervical, head and neck, lung, prostate and sarcomas. Radiation is also used for eye, lymphomas, thyroid cancers...

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Why Cancer Patients Become Anemic

by Jane Ashley

What causes anemia in cancer patients? How can we fix it? Nothing is more frustrating than being told that we can’t have chemo or learn that our surgery has been postponed we are anemia.

Anemia

What is anemia? 

Anemia is a common blood disorder. It occurs when we don’t have enough healthy red blood cells. Red blood cells are produced in our bone marrow, and they transport hemoglobin. The hemoglobin picks up oxygen in the lungs and delivers it throughout our body.

If our iron levels fall or if...

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The Consequences of Dry Mouth

by GregP_WN

Dry mouth can be caused by a variety of conditions, including prescription drugs, chemotherapy and radiation, and other disorders and syndromes. These conditions can inhibit the production of saliva and result in a sticky or even burning sensation in the mouth. Dry mouth is more than a nuisance to those who experience it because they often struggle with day to day activities like speaking, eating, and even sleeping. 

Dry Mouth

Long-term consequences of dry mouth include the decay of teeth due to...

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The Difference Between Neoadjuvant Therapy and Adjuvant Therapy

by Jane Ashley

When we think of cancer treatment, chemotherapy is probably the first thing that comes to mind. Chemo makes the news almost every day, in part because of its sometimes brutal side effects including hair loss, nausea/vomiting, fatigue and weight loss/weight gain. There are just over 250 chemotherapy drugs that are utilized in the treatment of all different types of cancer. 

Neo Adjuvant

We may think, “Well, chemo is chemo.”

That’s true, but chemotherapy is used in different ways for different...

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Radiation for Cancer - More Choices

by Jane Ashley

Before diagnosis, many people don’t realize that radiation therapy is an integral part of cancer treatment. It is used to kill cancerous tumors or shrink tumors before surgery. Estimates suggest that over half of all cancer patients receive radiation during their treatment. You might be wondering how radiation works and if it might work for your cancer. Consider the information contained here as Radiation 101.

Radiation, What To Expect Guide

How Radiation Works on Cancer Cells

Cancer cells are faster-growing cells than...

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