1. Does everybody experience the same side effects?
No. Side effects vary from patient to patient, depending on the type, size, and location of the cancer. Some people have few to no side effects.
2. How will IMRT affect my daily routine?
Many patients are able to continue most of their usual daily activities during treatment. Listen to your body and allow yourself the extra rest you may need. If your energy level decreases, it should return to normal within four to six weeks after treatment ends.
3. How will my eating be affected?
If your treatment are is near your digestive tract, you may lose interest in food during treatment. It is very important, however, not to lose weight during treatment. Try to eat small meals often, eat a variety of foods, and keep your protein and caloric intake high.
4. Will I lose my hair?
IMRT, like forms of radiation therapy, can cause temporary hair loss, but only in the area being treated. The amount of hair that grows back depends on the amount of radiation you receive.
5. Will IMRT affect my skin?
Three to four weeks into therapy, depending on your particular treatment, the skin in the treatment area may feel irritated or look sunburned. Be sure to notify your doctor or nurse if this happens. These skin reactions are temporary and should go away after a few weeks after treatment if completed.
6. How can I help take care of myself during treatment?
Be sure to get plenty of rest. Eat a healthy diet that will prevent weightloss. Drink extra water and other liquids (avoid alcohol as it is dehydrating). Be very gentle with the skin in the treatment area.
The American Urologic Association has a Urology Care foundation that provides education resources for patients.
The link below will take you to that web site.