In English | En español
Questions About Cancer? 1-800-4-CANCER

Nausea and Vomiting (PDQ®)

  • Last Modified: 12/12/2013

Page Options

  • Print This Page
  • Print This Document
  • View Entire Document
  • Email This Document

Causes



Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are the most common causes of nausea and vomiting in patients being treated for cancer.

Nausea is controlled by a part of the central nervous system that controls involuntary body functions (like the heart beating). Vomiting is a reflex controlled by a vomiting center in the brain. Vomiting can be triggered by smell, taste, anxiety, pain, motion, poor blood flow, irritation, or changes in the body caused by inflammation.

The most common causes of nausea and vomiting are:

Many factors increase the risk for nausea and vomiting.

Nausea and vomiting are more likely if the patient: