Side effects of radiation therapy and limited ways

To reduce fatigue, hair loss, nausea, diarrhea . after radiotherapy, patients pay attention to nutrition, drink plenty of water, moderate exercise, positive psychology .

Participating in the seminar on April 6 with the theme of cancer, Dr. Daisuke Tachikawa, Deputy Director of Wakamiya Hospital (Japan) said that cancer is a disease that is currently on a global trend and both Vietnam.

In 2018, the Global Cancer Organization said the world had 18.1 million new cases and 9.6 million deaths; it is expected to increase to 19.3 million new cases in 2025, of which the majority are in developing countries. Vietnam has 165,000 new cases and more than 11,000 deaths, equivalent to more than 450 new people daily and more than 300 deaths. Particularly liver cancer has 25,335 new cases and 25,404 cases of death because of this disease.

To treat cancer, Dr. Tachikawa said there are three main methods: chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery. More recently, immunotherapy has been added to become the four main treatments. Depending on the type of disease, tumor location, spread, cancer stage, the doctor will decide which treatment is best based on each patient. Immunotherapy can be combined with the above three methods to help reduce side effects to a minimum for patients.

In particular, radiotherapy is one of the most popular methods, using high-energy rays or strong electromagnetic waves (X-ray, gamma .) to destroy cancer cells. Patients can receive direct or indirect radiotherapy to remove cancer cells, shrink the tumor to remove it, alleviate bone pain and small atrophy of tumors located in special places such as the spine, sensitive area .

Picture 1 of Side effects of radiation therapy and limited ways
Dr. Daisuke Tachikawa (right) said that cancer tends to increase globally and Vietnam.

However, radiotherapy can cause various, common side effects including:

  • Accumulate toxic metals and free radicals.
  • Skin reactions : Dry, itchy, rash, red, dark, blistering, cracked .
  • Fatigue, weak liver function: Liver keeps metabolism and detoxifies. When blood contains toxins, it makes the liver less effective, limiting the blood transporting oxygen and nutrients to create energy. As a result, the patient will be tired constantly.
  • Hair loss : Radiotherapy causes rapid cell damage, including hair roots. The condition may last 2-3 weeks after the first radiation treatment.
  • Diarrhea : Radiotherapy in the pelvic area, stomach and abdomen can cause diarrhea. This treatment also affects good cells in the small intestine, the large intestine.
  • Vomiting, nausea : Radiotherapy and regular antibiotic use can affect intestinal health, leading to nausea.

How to limit the side effects of radiation therapy

  • To increase treatment effectiveness and limit the side effects of radiotherapy, Dr. Tachikawa recommends that patients focus on nutrition with a full menu of substances: protein, sugar powder, fat, vitamins, minerals , country; divided into 5-6 small meals a day instead of 3 big meals.
  • Strengthen fish, vegetables and limit meat. To prioritize the selection of clean and fresh types, ensure food hygiene and safety, preserve in cold conditions, limit the loss of vitamins in the process of processing and preliminary processing."Mushrooms, seaweed, cabbage . are cancer foods that should be prioritized , " he stressed.
  • Rinse mouth before eating; sour fruits such as oranges, tangerines, lemons, grapefruit .; Eating before hunger . can also reduce nausea symptoms.
  • Drinking plenty of water and exercise is also important to provide nutrients and enhance resistance.
  • The patients are limited to one place, so they can mobilize anytime and anywhere with the appropriate intensity to relax their bodies, the mind is relaxed, avoid thinking too much.

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