|Chemotherapy Affects the Whole Body|
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- Undergoing cancer treatment
- Worsening of cancer
- Having a pre-existing condition, such as poor nutrition or breathing problems
- Yours or a family history of depression
- Extreme fatigue that is not relieved by sleep or rest
- Lack of energy to do basic daily tasks
- Trouble concentrating and remembering
- Heavy feeling in the arms and legs
- Poor balance
- Shortness of breath
- Impatience, irritability
- Have your symptoms been worsening? When do your symptoms appear and how long do they last?
- What medications are you taking?
- How often do you sleep and for how long?
- What are you eating?
- What makes you feel better? Worse?
- Have you been depressed?
- How has your work status and financial condition been affected by cancer?
- What kind of support system do you have?
- Medications to treat the underlying condition, such as anemia
- Exercise—Light exercise, such as walking for 15-30 minutes per day during times when you have more energy.
- Learn proper sleep and relaxation techniques, such as relaxing before bed or not napping for more than 1 hour
- Eat a healthful diet.
Gain control of your daily life:
- Talk with your employer about your work schedule and workload.
- Talk with a financial advisor to help you with your costs and to plan for the future.
American Cancer Society http://www.cancer.org
National Cancer Institute http://www.cancer.gov
Canadian Cancer Society http://www.cancer.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Anemia of chronic disease. Iron Disorders Institute website. Available at: http://www.irondisorders.org/anemia-of-chronic-disease. Accessed November 28, 2014.
Fatigue and cancer. International Cancer Council website. Available at: http://www.iccnetwork.org/cancerfacts/FatigueFactSheetJan2011RevPost.pdf. Accessed November 28, 2014.
Feeling tired vs. cancer-related fatigue. American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatmentsandsideeffects/physicalsideeffects/fatigue/feeling-tired-vs-cancer-related-fatigue. Updated October 22, 2014. Accessed November 28, 2014.
Lower EE, Fleishman S, et al. Efficacy of dexmethylphenidate for the treatment of fatigue after cancer chemotherapy: a randomized clinical trial. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2009;38(5):650-662.
Minton O, Richardson A, et al. A systematic review and meta-analysis of the pharmacological treatment of cancer-related fatigue. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2008;100(16):1155-1166.
Stedman’s Medical Dictionary. 28th ed. Baltimore, MD: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2005; 298.
What to do when you feel weak or tired. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/coping/radiation-side-effects/fatigue.pdf.. Updated April 2010. Accessed November 28, 2014.
10/1/2013 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Patterson E, Wan YW, et al. Nonpharmacological nursing interventions for the management of patient fatigue: a literature review. J Clin Nurs. 2013;22(19-20): 2668-2678.
11/4/2013 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Yennurajalingam S, Frisbee dt al. Reduction of cancer-related fatigue with dexamethasone: A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial in patients with advanced cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2013;31(25):3076-3082.
- Reviewer: Mohei Abouzied, MD
- Review Date: 11/2014 -
- Update Date: 01/13/2014 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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