Skin Cancer, Melanoma
Skin Cancer, Melanoma
Home treatment can help you manage any side effects that your treatment might cause. If your doctor gives you instructions or medicines to
treat these side effects, be sure to follow them. In general, healthy habits such
as eating a balanced diet and getting enough sleep and exercise may help
control your symptoms.
- Home treatment for nausea or vomiting
includes watching for and treating early signs of
dehydration, such as having a dry mouth or feeling lightheaded when you stand up. Eating smaller meals may help. So can a little bit of ginger candy or ginger tea.
- Home treatment for diarrhea includes
resting your stomach and watching for signs of dehydration. Check with your
doctor before using any nonprescription medicines for your
- Home treatment for constipation
includes gentle exercise along with getting enough fluids and having a diet that
is high in fruits, vegetables, and fiber. Check with your doctor before using a
laxative for your constipation.
- Home treatment for fatigue includes making sure you get extra rest. Let your symptoms be your guide.
Fatigue is often worse at the end of treatment or just after treatment is
- Home treatment for sleep problems includes going to bed at the same time every night and getting exercise during the day.
- Home treatment for pain includes using heat and cold packs.
Stress, hair loss, and body image
- The diagnosis of melanoma and the need for treatment can be very stressful. You may be able to reduce your stress by expressing your feelings to others. Learning relaxation techniques may also help reduce your
- Hair loss can be emotionally
distressing. Not all chemotherapy medicines cause hair loss. And some people
have only mild thinning that is noticeable only to them. Talk to your doctor
about whether hair loss is an expected side effect with the medicines you will
- Your feelings about your body may change following a
diagnosis of melanoma and the need for treatment.
Adapt to your body-image changes by
talking openly about your concerns with your partner and discussing your
feelings with your doctor. Your doctor may also be able to refer you to groups
that can offer more support and information.
Having cancer can change your life in many ways. For help in managing these changes, see the topic Getting Support When You Have Cancer.
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Amy McMichael, MD - Dermatology
October 12, 2012
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