Feeling physically, mentally, and emotionally drained during treatment is a very common side effect of cancer treatment.

  • Chemo and radiation treatments, surgery, dehydration, not eating enough, infections, and treatment side effects contribute to fatigue.
  • Your emotional state, feeling anxious or depressed, can both cause and affect your fatigue.
  • Share your feelings with your care team. While there is no “magic pill” or treatment to get rid of your fatigue, they may be able to provide more support in how to manage it. Acupuncture, healing touch, aromatherapy, massage therapy, and reflexology are all alternative treatments about which you may want to inquire.
  • Keep active. It may sound counter-intuitive, but a walk, yoga class, or custom-tailored workout can really help. Talk to your doctors about the type and level of activity they recommend.
  • Plan for naps. Recognize when you have the most energy and prioritize your “to do” list around those times. For the times when your energy feels depleted, take a nap.
  • Let things go. Recognize that your fatigue will impact your day-to-day life – dishes might not get washed, your bed not made, dinner out may have to be canceled. If this bothers you, ask friends and family for help.