Exploring the Physical Challenges of Breast Cancer Treatment
Women often sacrifice their own needs to care for their families. However, the key to being an effective caregiver is to care for one’s own health. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October, take a few minutes to learn how to safeguard your health. You might consider visiting your local children’s hospital to discuss having a screening mammogram, for example. At your community hospital , you might also discuss your risk factors of breast cancer and learn how lifestyle changes may help reduce your risk.
Breast cancer treatment has helped countless women survive the diagnosis; however, it also comes at a cost. Breast cancer treatment involves a slew of physical side effects, such as lymphedema. Lymphedema is a common problem associated with surgery or radiation therapy to treat breast cancer . It arises from the removal of lymph nodes, which causes the buildup of fluid. This can cause significant swelling, reduced flexibility, and discomfort. Your doctor may recommend visiting a physical therapist at the local hospital and receiving other types of treatments to reduce the swelling.
For individuals with breast cancer, fatigue goes well beyond mere tiredness. This level of fatigue is not alleviated by rest and affects many aspects of life—from mood to physical activity. You can turn to your community hospital for resources on combating fatigue. Your doctor may recommend an exercise program, nutritional counseling, and stress management techniques.
Pain is a common physical challenge associated with breast cancer treatment and with the cancer itself. It’s important to work closely with your care team at the local hospital to manage your pain. Let them know if your medications are insufficient to control your pain or if the medications are causing other undesirable side effects.
The team at Sunrise Children’s Hospital is dedicated to helping families make informed decisions for their well-being. Our children’s hospital offers low-cost screening mammograms without the need for a physician referral. Families throughout the Las Vegas area can call (702) 731-5437 for information about the other services available at our children’s hospital, including our children’s emergency care and high-risk pregnancy care.