Possible side effects of Breast cancer Treatment: How they affect a cancer patient's body

by Cancer Consult India Cancer Consult India

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women worldwide. 2.1 million women get diagnosed with breast cancer every year, and the numbers are seeing a staggering increase. Breast cancer treatment, on the other hand, is readily available and oncologists, as well as some of the biggest researchers, are working day in and day out to create less invasive better treatments. But, to this day, breast cancer treatment has its side effects; some worse than the others.

How is the treatment plan chosen?

Several factors come into play when cancer doctors choose a cancer treatment plan for a particular patient. For example, a tumour can be small but can grow faster, and another could be large with a slow growth; and this is only one example. So, what are the factors?

  • The tumour's subtype

  • The stage of Cancer

  • Specific genomic markers

  • Patient's age, General Health, and menopausal status

  • Any known mutations in inherited breast cancer genes

  • Patients' preference

Types of Breast Cancer treatments

Primarily there are four types of breast cancer treatment today.

  • Surgery-The doctor operates on the patient and cuts out the cancer tissues.

  • Chemotherapy-Medicines are given orally or through veins to kill or shrink cancer cells.

  • Radiation Therapy-High-energy rays are directed towards the affected part to kill cancer cells.

  • Hormone Therapy-Specific medicines are administered orally to stop hormones from attaching to the receptors of cancer cells.

Now that we have a little more clarity about the what and why of breast cancer treatment, it is time to learn about the side effects. Why? Because there is a fear regarding this among many newly diagnosed breast cancer patients and others as well. Fear is a legitimate reaction but not an answer. We aim to give you answers.

Treatment 1-Surgery

Side-effects: Shoulder stiffness, lingering pain, and lymphoedema

What can help: Physiotherapy, regular exercise, diet & weight management.

Some of the best oncologists in Delhi NCR and around the world suggest breast cancer patients to engage in an aggressive form of physiotherapy to alleviate the pain and stiffness faster.

Treatment 2-Chemotherapy

If you asked some of the best cancer doctors in town, like Dr. Manish Singhal, a reputed cancer specialist in Delhi, whether you should fear chemotherapy as a breast cancer treatment because of all that it comes with, they would tell you that today the side effects of chemotherapy have lessened a lot because better medications and safeguard mechanisms are available today. But, some side-effects still remain, though quite manageable.

Side-effects: Hair loss, nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, neuropathy, and fatigue.

What can help: Cooling caps, nausea/vomiting preventing medications, antibiotics (prophylactically), treatment that causes neuropathy can be changed, and physiotherapy for fatigue.

Treatment 3-Radiation therapy

If radiotherapy has been suggested as a breast cancer treatment option for you and you are fearful of it, of course, you can consult the best breast cancer doctor in Delhi NCR or wherever you reside for a better understanding of the treatment. But, even the best cancer doctor will tell you that radiotherapy, just like chemotherapy, has improved and causes way less spillage leading to way fewer side effects. However, there are a few side effects.

Side-effects: Skin changes, pneumonitis, and fatigue

What can help: Most skin changes heal on their own, for others there are creams and supportive products. Anti-inflammatory drugs for pneumonitis can help. Exercise & physiotherapy for fatigue.

Treatment 4-Hormone Therapy

The side-effects of hormone therapy are not life threatening, but can be uncomfortable.

Side-effects: Joint pain, body ache, mood swings, and hot flashes

What can help: Exercise, yoga, healthy eating, meditation, and hydration

While we have tried to give you a little insight into the side effects of breast cancer treatment so you can be observant but not anxious, if you need in-depth knowledge about the same or if you are suffering from some other symptoms, do not forget to consult your oncologist or a reputed practitioner like Dr. Manish Singhal, known to offer the best breast cancer treatment in Delhi and Noida. Also, there is a lot more information available on different platforms like Youtube about “how does breast cancer affect a person's daily life” by such experienced doctors.

The ending note

A breast cancer diagnosis and the subsequent breast cancer treatment can take a toll on you. But, the first thing you need to do is collaborate with your oncologist to understand your situation. Then if you think you need to know some more, get a second opinion. Choose your breast cancer treatment plan carefully and prepare for the side-effects but, don't fear them. You will get through this with knowledge, clarity, and support.

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Created on Jul 8th 2020 01:52. Viewed 492 times.


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