Dealing with Side – Effects of Ovarian Cancer

As an oncologist, I understand the physical and emotional toll that ovarian cancer treatment can take. Whether patients are facing surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy, side effects are a reality we need to address, especially since they impact physical, mental and emotional well-being.

In this article, we will explore the different types of ovarian cancer treatments and the side effects these women might encounter. We'll also explore coping mechanisms and resources to help navigate this challenge.

Understanding ovarian cancer treatment options and its side effects.

Like most cancers, the specific treatment for ovarian cancers will depend on the stage and grade of the cancer and the current health status of the affected woman.

Surgery is usually the first step in treating ovarian cancer which involves the physical removal of the cancerous ovary and surrounding tissue. Potential side effects of surgery include pain, fatigue and sometimes short-term issues of the bowel.

Most women also have to undergo chemotherapy which comes with its own set of side effects, including fatigue, skin irritation, nerve problems, nausea, vomiting, cognitive changes like chemo-brain, poor appetite, constipation, hair loss and increased risk of infection.

Radiation therapy which consists of high-energy beams that target and destroy cancer cells left over from surgery is also associated with side effects like fatigue, skin irritation and changes in bowel habits.

Targeted therapy is being extensively used in treating ovarian cancer and side effects depend on the type of drugs used. Side effects usually include fatigue and skin-related problems.

Coping mechanisms and resources.

Women undergoing ovarian cancer treatment should understand that they are not alone in this journey. Along with family, friends and professional healthcare workers, they can effectively cope with the side effects of the treatment of ovarian cancer.