What to avoid during chemotherapy

What to avoid during chemotherapy

Julie Scott, DNP
Julie Scott, DNP
What to avoid during chemotherapy | cancerGO

Chemotherapy is a common treatment for cancer that uses powerful drugs to kill cancer cells. While chemotherapy can be effective in treating cancer, it can also have side effects. There are several things that patients should avoid when getting chemotherapy to help minimize these side effects and ensure the best possible outcome.

Avoid Exposure to Infections

Chemotherapy can lower a person’s immune system, making them more vulnerable to infections. To avoid exposure to infections, patients should avoid crowded areas, wash their hands frequently, and avoid contact with people who are sick. It is also important to avoid eating undercooked or raw foods and to take extra precautions when handling and preparing food.

Avoid Certain Foods and Beverages

Some foods and beverages can interfere with chemotherapy and make side effects worse. Patients should often avoid alcohol, as it may interact with chemotherapy drugs or increase the risk of liver damage.

Avoid Overexertion

Chemotherapy can cause fatigue and weakness, making it important for patients to avoid overexertion. Patients should rest when they feel tired and avoid activities that require a lot of energy. It is also important to stay hydrated and eat a healthy diet to help maintain energy levels.

Avoid Smoking

Smoking can interfere with chemotherapy and increase the risk of complications. Patients should avoid smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke, as it can weaken the immune system and reduce the effectiveness of chemotherapy.

Avoid Certain Medications

Some medications can interfere with chemotherapy and make side effects worse. Patients should talk to their doctor before taking any new medications, including over-the-counter medications and herbal supplements. Patients may also need to avoid taking aspirin or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) as they can increase the risk of bleeding and interfere with chemotherapy.

Each person should speak with their oncology team for any specific suggestions or recommendations on things to avoid while receiving chemotherapy.

Julie Scott, DNP
Julie Scott, DNP
Julie is an oncology certified Oncology Nurse Practitioner with over a decade of medical oncology experience. In addition to her clinical work, she is an accomplished healthcare writer providing oncology content for various publications. She also serves as an adjunct faculty member for a Master's nursing program and a chair for Doctoral nursing students.

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