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Side Effects of Radiation Therapy

Although considered the best mode of treatment for cancer patients, radiotherapy still has some side effects associated with it. This is because as much as radiotherapy is targetted towards destroying the cancerous cells in the body, good cells also get destroyed in the process. The side effect symptoms emerge as a result of the good cells being destroyed during treatment. However, doctors work hard to keep the normal tissue as safe as possible from destruction

1. Fatigue

This is mainly a result of poor appetite, anemia or depression. When the cancerous cells break down and die a toxic substance is created. The body also uses a lot of energy to heal itself during treatment hence fatigue.

2. Hair Loss

This occurs in the area subjected to radiation. The amount of hair loss depends on the dose of radiation. Higher doses amount to much hair loss.

3. Radiation Sickness

Some patients will experience nausea, vomiting and loss of appetite during radiotherapy treatment especially if it is around the stomach and abdomen.

4. Reduced Bone Growth

Radiation in the treatment area may lead to the destruction of the rapidly dividing immature cells of the bone hence reduced bone growth. However, this is mostly common in small children whose bones haven't fully matured yet.

5. Anxiety and Depression Different people react differently to the realization that they have cancer. If the news is taken hard, one may experience depression. 6. Sleep Problems

Insomnia is a common side effect to radiation therapy treatment. This may also be caused by some medications administered during the treatment; pain, depression and anxiety medicine.

7. Second Cancer

There has been some reported cases whereby a radiation therapy patient develops a second cancer. This is especially so if it is paired with chemotherapy. However, this happens years after successfully completing the radiotherapy treatment.

Radiotherapy remains a trusted mode of treatment for prostate cancer as well as all other cancer patients. Although there are side effects associated with it, they are considered tolerable to the patient compared to all other approaches to cancer treatment. With radiotherapy, one is able to basically live their lives uninterrupted. They are able to maintain their active lifestyles; playing golf, physical exercises, attend social gatherings, go to work and most importantly, drive themselves to and from treatment sessions. The advanced Prostate Cancer Treatment Institute is a qualified institution for the treatment of prostate cancer. They are knownto walk hand in hand with their patients through this trying time and see them through to full recovery.

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