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Topic of the Month: Cancer-Related Fatigue

Topic of the Month: Cancer-Related Fatigue

What is Cancer-Related Fatigue?

Cancer-related fatigue is the most common side effect of cancer and cancer treatment. Research suggests that anywhere between 70% and 100% of cancer patients getting treatment have fatigue. And about 30% to 50% of cancer survivors have said that their fatigue lasts for months or even years after they finish treatment.

What Causes Fatigue in Cancer Patients?

Doctors are trying to better understand how cancer treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy cause fatigue. The type and schedule of cancer treatments have different effects on a patient's energy level.


Talking about Fatigue

Treating fatigue is an important part of care for you and your family. It is often possible to lessen fatigue so that life can become more normal. But before anything can be done to help you, your health care team must know about your level of fatigue, or how bad your fatigue is.


Coping with Cancer-Related Fatigue

There is no way to know whether you will have fatigue or how bad it will be. But there are things you can do to help fight fatigue. Here are 7 tips to help manage cancer-related fatigue: Fatigue in Caregivers

Fatigue in Caregivers

Caregivers may feel guilty thinking about themselves when someone close to them has so many pressing needs. However, it's important to maintain your own health and well-being to provide the best possible care to a loved one.


How Should I manage Fatigue During the Holidays?

Make a list of the events you usually participate in and choose the favorites you would like to continue. You may want to talk with family and friends about combining events (such as decorating the house and making holiday goodies) or changing locations to reduce your travel.


Lurie Cancer Center Supportive Oncology Team

The Supportive Oncology Program provides emotional and practical support for patients and their families during all stages of treatment and recovery. Our psychologists, social workers, dietitians and other experts can provide strategies for managing cancer-related fatigue.

Read more on our Oncology Team page

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