Potential Side Effects of Urethral Cancer Symptom Treatment
Cancer treatments have side effects because it is hard to keep healthy cells safe while trying to kill cancer cells. Side effects of treatment depend on the type of treatment and the person's overall health when treatment starts.
Side Effects of Surgery
After surgery you may experience pain in the area near where the incision (cut) was made. This is normal and should not last for long. Your surgeon will discuss these risks in detail before the surgery. Bleeding and infection are other possible complications. Scarring of the urethra after surgery may cause difficulty urinating. If this happens, a procedure can be done (known as a urethral dilation) to help reopen the urethra.
Side Effects of Radiation Therapy
Side effects of radiation can include nausea, diarrhea, skin irritation leading to redness and soreness, burning during urination, and fatigue. Usually these side effects go away after treatment, and many can be managed with certain drugs. Some side effects may be long-lasting, such as urethral or vaginal strictures (blockages due to scar tissue).
Side Effects of Chemotherapy
The side effects of chemotherapy depend on the type of drugs that are given. Chemotherapy attacks cells that divide quickly, such as cancer cells. However, healthy cells can sometimes be affected, too. If white blood cell levels are affected by chemotherapy, the risk of infection becomes much higher. Any symptoms of infection, particularly fever, during chemotherapy should be reported to the doctor or nurse as soon as possible.
If platelet counts are down, there may be a higher risk of bruising and bleeding more easily from a cut or injury. Tiredness is also possible because of the lack of red blood cells. In addition, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, loss of hair, and mouth sores are other possible side effects. Most of these side effects go away a few days or weeks after the treatment is stopped. There are drugs that can help reduce the side effects and help people recover from chemotherapy more quickly.