Quick Answer: What Can I Expect After My First Radiation Treatment?

Does radiation weaken your immune system?

Radiation therapy can potentially affect your immune system, especially if a significant amount of bone marrow is being irradiated because of its role in creating white blood cells.

However, this doesn’t typically suppress the immune system enough to make you more susceptible to infections..

What can you not do during radiation treatment?

Its best to avoid fried foods as a precaution during your radiation therapy. Spicy Foods – Plenty of us enjoy spicy foods, but the truth is they could wreak havoc on your body if you eat them while undergoing radiation therapy. Radiation typically causes nausea and loose stools or constipation.

What foods are good for radiation?

Protein-rich foods, such as fish, lean meat, legumes, nuts, eggs and dairy, to rejuvenate the immune system. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats for improved energy. Carbohydrates from whole grains, including those found in breads, cereals, quinoa, rice and more.

Is radiation worse than chemo?

When it comes to side effects, radiation therapy is a little different than chemotherapy in that it only causes side effects in the area being treated (with the exception of fatigue), and generally has risk for both early and late side effects.

What is the first sign of too much radiation?

The initial signs and symptoms of treatable radiation sickness are usually nausea and vomiting. The amount of time between exposure and when these symptoms develop is a clue to how much radiation a person has absorbed.

How are radiation treatments given?

How is radiation therapy given? Radiation therapy can be given in 3 ways: External radiation (or external beam radiation): uses a machine that directs high-energy rays from outside the body into the tumor. It’s done during outpatient visits to a hospital or treatment center.

Can I drive after radiotherapy?

Will I be able to drive after my radiotherapy treatment? Almost all patients are able to drive while receiving radiotherapy treatment. However, with some types of cancer, driving may NOT be recommended due to fatigue or strong pain medication. Your physician will be able to address your specific case.

How long does it take to recover from radiation therapy?

Most side effects generally go away within a few weeks to 2 months of finishing treatment. But some side effects may continue after treatment is over because it takes time for healthy cells to recover from the effects of radiation therapy. Late side effects can happen months or years after treatment.

How long does radiation side effects last?

Early side effects, such as nausea and fatigue, usually don’t last long. They may start during or right after treatment and last for several weeks after it ends, but then they get better. Late side effects, such as lung or heart problems, may take years to show up and are often permanent when they do.

What should I avoid after radiation?

Foods to avoid or reduce during radiation therapy include sodium (salt), added sugars, solid (saturated) fats, and an excess of alcohol. Some salt is needed in all diets. Your doctor or dietitian can recommend how much salt you should consume based on your medical history.

Does radiation shorten your life?

chemotherapy, radiation therapy and other cancer treatments cause aging at a genetic and cellular level, prompting DNA to start unraveling and cells to die off sooner than normal. bone marrow transplant recipients are eight times more likely to become frail than their healthy siblings.

What foods taste good after radiation?

Many foods, including meat and poultry, taste better if they are served cold or at room temperature instead of hot. Eggs often taste good when the taste for meat is lost. Fresh fruits and vegetables, pasta dishes, and milk products are often well tolerated. Fruit sorbet, sherbet, and fruit smoothies usually taste good.

Is radiation treatment painful?

For people beginning radiation therapy, this fear seems to be heightened by some common misunderstandings about the treatment. Radiation therapy is painful. Not really. Most patients have no sensation of radiation when the machine is delivering the daily treatment.

How do you feel after radiation?

Most people start to feel tired after a few weeks of radiation therapy. This happens because radiation treatments destroy some healthy cells as well as the cancer cells. Fatigue usually gets worse as treatment goes on. Stress from being sick and daily trips for treatment can make fatigue worse.

Will I lose weight during radiation?

Appetite: While it is important to try not to lose weight during treatment, the side effects of radiation to certain areas of the body may make it difficult to eat and digest. Try eating small meals often, and avoid extremely hot or cold foods.

Does radiation cause weight gain?

Radiation and chemotherapy often cause a decrease in appetite. They can also lead to side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and mouth sores, which can affect your ability to eat normally, further contributing to weight and muscle loss.

What should I do after radiation therapy?

During radiation therapy: Be gentle and protect your skinWash the treated skin gently every day with warm water. … Use a gentle, low-pH cleanser if you need to cleanse. … Ignore the lines drawn on your skin. … Avoid shaving the treated skin. … Apply moisturizer every day as directed.

What is the most common acute side effect of radiation treatment?

Fatigue is the most common acute side effect of radiation therapy. It is believed to be caused by the tremendous amount of energy that is used by the body to heal itself in response to radiation therapy. Most people begin to feel fatigued about 2 weeks after radiation treatments begin.

How long does it take for radiation to shrink a tumor?

At the same time, if a cell doesn’t divide, it also cannot grow and spread. For tumors that divide slowly, the mass may shrink over a long, extended period after radiation stops. The median time for a prostate cancer to shrink is about 18 months (some quicker, some slower).

What are the long term side effects of radiation?

What are the most common long-term side effects of radiation?Cataracts.Hair loss.Hearing loss.Memory loss (“It’s hard to determine how much memory loss or cognitive dysfunction is related to a tumor and how much is related to radiotherapy,” says Dr. Nowlan.