Managing cancer side effects

Cancer and cancer treatments may cause a range of side effects. They vary depending on the treatments you were given. Side effects may vary from person to person, and even among those having the same treatment.

It can take time to get over the side effects of treatment. Some problems resolve quickly; others can take weeks, months or even years to improve.

– Neil

Ask your health care team what side effects you are likely to experience.

Information about managing common side effects

  • Fatigue: This is the most common side effect of cancer and its treatment. Information on what causes it and how to cope.
  • Hair loss: Tips on why hair loss happens and how to take care of your hair and scalp during and after treatment. Download fact sheet.
  • Taste and smell changes: How to manage common changes to the taste of food and drink during treatment. Download fact sheet.
  • Exercise: How physical activity can help during and after cancer treatment, with instructions and videos showing some simple exercises to improve strength and flexibility.
  • Nutrition: Information on managing changes to appetite, weight, taste and smell and other issues such as feeling sick, having a sore mouth, trouble swallowing and bowel changes such as diarrhoea and constipation.
  • Cancer pain: How to overcome different types of cancer pain, treatments and non-medication options, and caring for someone in pain.
  • Breast reconstruction: What to consider when deciding whether or not to wear a prosthesis or get a reconstruction after breast surgery.
  • Exercise: How physical activity can help during and after cancer treatment, with instructions and videos showing some simple exercises to improve strength and flexibility.
  • Fertility: Information for when cancer treatment affects the ability to conceive a child or maintain a pregnancy (fertility).
  • Sexuality: How to manage changes to your sexuality and intimate relationships.
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