Side Effects of Cancer Treatment

An Elder Man Smiling at a Male Doctor

Tell your doctor about side effects you are experiencing, so you get the care and treatment you need to manage these problems.

Credit: iStock

Cancer treatments can cause side effects—problems that occur when treatment affects healthy tissues or organs. Ask your health care team what side effects you are likely to have. Information on how to prevent or manage these problems is explained below.

Learn about steps you can take, and supportive care you will receive, to feel better – if you have one of these side effects:

Speak up about any side effects you have, or changes you notice, so your health care team can treat or help you to manage these side effects. Keep in mind that side effects vary from person to person, even among those receiving the same treatment.

  • Updated: September 22, 2017

Most text on the National Cancer Institute website may be reproduced or reused freely. The National Cancer Institute should be credited as the source and a link to this page included, e.g., “Side Effects of Cancer Treatment was originally published by the National Cancer Institute.”

Please note that blog posts that are written by individuals from outside the government may be owned by the writer, and graphics may be owned by their creator. In such cases, it is necessary to contact the writer, artists, or publisher to obtain permission for reuse.

We welcome your comments on this post. All comments must follow our comment policy.