Tips for Dealing with Radiation Nausea
Hi All -
I am undergoing radiation treatments for MALT lymphoma in my stomach. Just 20 daily treatments, and yesterday was #6. Have started to experience nausea (thankfully no vomiting at this point) beginning a couple hours after treatment (4:15 each day) and lasting through the evening. I am generally in the recliner resting most of the evening. I take Zofran an hour prior to treatment per dr. advice. What tips can anyone offer for dealing with the nausea? No real fatigue yet – I actually do not feel poorly the next morning, and am able to work (desk job) until it’s time to leave (7.5 hours) for treatment. I don’t deal well with nausea as, up until now, I am almost NEVER sick. Dreading the remainder of treatments (especially since dr has advised side effects are cumulative) and that’s not a positive thing for getting through them.
What worked best for me was taking the meds BEFORE the onset of nausea. My doctors had prescribed multiple meds to combat nausea. Some were short acting, some long acting. I took them as prescribed but always started on them prior to actually feeling that I needed them. I also took them so they overlapped. By that I mean that if one pill was supposed to be taken every 4 hours and another every 8, I’d take the longer acting one first at, say, 1pm. Then take the shorter acting one at, say, 3pm, another shorter acting one at 7pm, followed by the longer acting one at 9pm and so on.
Nothing worked perfectly, but trying to stay ahead of the nausea seemed to work better than anything else.
I was advised to try eating smaller meals/snacks throughout the day. I was not given any meds at this point as it’s not very bad. For me it usually starts when I get out of bed in the morning. Saltine crackers also help. Ginger tea, ginger ale – really anything with ginger might help as well.
When I was being treated for Large Diffuse B cell lymphoma I was prescribed Zofran 8 mg every 8 hours or Lorazepam, Ativan.
Trust me when I say the Ativan worked the best.
Check with your oncologist.
I’m a nurse and learned different meds were used differently than what I used them for when I was practicing.