Cancer is known as one of the most serious type of disease as some years ago it was considered as incurable disease. If a person is diagnosed with cancer then he has to go through many rounds of chemotherapy, which makes a person weak and prone to many serious infections. Most cancer patients have to visit to their treating doctors in order to treat the infection they get after receiving chemotherapy.
Why people easily get infections after a chemotherapy session?
Chemotherapy can affect people differently as it can have both physical and mental effects on an individual. Drugs used in chemotherapy can have different side effects on people. Chemotherapy can decrease the number of white blood cells and can make the immune system weak. Immune system helps our body to fight with infections and chemotherapy can make our body open to infections.
Chemotherapy drugs can decrease the neutrophil count of the body and this can lead to various types of infections. This can also decrease the amount of gut bacteria that is present in the gut and can lead to multiple types of bacterial infections. A patient receiving chemotherapy can easily get infected to easily communicable viral infections such as cold and flu.
Side effects of chemotherapy
- A person receiving regular chemotherapy may face various problems. Fatigue is the most common side effect of the therapy as you may lack energy and strength. Patient can feel exhausted, impatient, confused, and drowsy. He may also find difficulties to do his daily activities.
- While going through chemotherapy the patient may experience change in appetite, they may feel hungrier or sometimes you may not enjoy the food. Nausea and vomiting might also be experienced.
- Hair loss is the major side effect of the therapy, some people may lose their hair very soon and some may take time for it. It usually occurs after two to three weeks after the first round of therapy and the patient may feel hot and itchy scalp before losing their hair.
- Skin problems, constipation, diarrhea, mouth sores, mood swings, and many other problems can also be the result of this therapy.
Ways to prevent various types of infections
The patient has to be very careful before and after receiving chemotherapy because it affects immunity. The immune system is a defense system of our body and chemotherapy can damage it. This can make you flat to various types of virus and infections. Following things can helps you to fight against probable infections.
The patient has to be made aware of their changing health conditions. In case of fever, it becomes vital to consult the treating doctor. It may be a sign that the body is getting infected to infections and this can be life threatening. Make sure the patient has a normal body temperature and it should not be more than 100ᵒF. in case the temperature exceeds this point, call the doctor as soon as possible.
It is necessary to practice hygiene to avoid any infection. Your protection and safety is only in your hand and it is vital to keep your hands clean in order to protect yourself from infection. Most of diseases spread through dirty hands and this can become very dangerous for patient getting chemotherapy.
Food and diet can play an important role to enhance immunity as balanced diet can help in improving the neutrophil count. It is vital to include fresh fruits and vegetables in the diet of a cancer patient because he can pick infection from various food and drinks.
Cancer patients require proper care and safety while receiving chemotherapy because this can make them weak and prone to various types of infections. Healthy food, proper medications, and awareness can help them manage the side effects of the therapy.