Prescription drugs heal us when we're sick, ease our pain when we ache, and prevent or control long-term conditions. Many prescription drugs, for example, cause stomach problems like nausea, diarrhea, or constipation because they pass through your digestive system. When your doctor. Worried about prescription medication side effects but feel overwhelmed by technical information? Here's how to guard against dangerous medication side. Side effects occur when healthy cells are damaged. Different chemotherapy and radiation treatments cause different side effects. Side effects.
Side Effects Treatment
Victorian government portal for older people, with information about government and community services and programs. Type a minimum of three characters then press UP or DOWN on the keyboard to navigate the autocompleted search results. All medicines can cause unwanted side effects.
For example, antibiotics such as those in the sulfonamide and penicillin families cause allergic reactions in around five per cent of the population. Skin rashes are a common reaction. However, whether a reaction is caused by the medicine or the illness that it is used to treat is sometimes difficult to tell. A further complication is the interaction of medicines with any other medicines the person may be taking, including prescription, over-the-counter and complementary medicines.
About 60 per cent of Australians use complementary medicines at least once a year. Many people believe that alternative or complementary preparations, such as herbal remedies, are safer because they are derived from natural sources. Some herbs can act on the body as powerfully as any conventional medicine, and unwanted side effects can occur. Some examples of complementary medicines that can cause side effects include: About 20 per cent of Australians are thought to take complementary medicines and prescription medicines at the same time.
This increases the risk of side effects, because the active ingredients in the various preparations can interact in a negative way. For example, the medicines may have similar active ingredients that act in the same way, or the complementary medicine may increase or reduce the effectiveness of the prescription medicine. Consuming alcohol with some medicines can also cause unwanted and sometimes dangerous side effects.
Alcohol can stay in your system for several hours after your last drink, so it is important to be aware that interactions can occur if you take your medication within this time frame. Talk to your doctor or other health professional for advice about your medication and drinking alcohol. The following content is displayed as Tabs. Once you have activated a link navigate to the end of the list to view its associated content.
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Countless sites on the Internet offer a range of treatments, usually at very cheap prices. However, using products bought from online A Consumer Medicines Information CMI leaflet gives you accurate information about the safety of your medication and how best to take it Most women take a drug of some kind during pregnancy, sometimes without realising the potential for harm All travellers should plan carefully, but older people have a few extra concerns when travelling Benzodiazepines tranquillisers are highly addictive and should only be used for certain conditions in a short-term or emergency situation Hormone replacement therapy HRT can reduce menopausal symptoms, but the benefits and risks need to be considered carefully Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines should always be used cautiously and for the shortest time possible Antioxidants scavenge free radicals from the body's cells, and prevent or reduce the damage caused by oxidation If you don't have enough calcium in your diet, your bones will eventually become weak and brittle Even women who aren't planning to have a baby should increase their folate intake in case of unplanned pregnancy A balanced approach to sunlight exposure will help you get enough vitamin D while protecting against skin cancer There is no evidence that any one vitamin can slow ageing, restore sex drive or cure infertility Influenza the flu is caused by a virus.
The flu is more than just a bad cold and can occasionally lead to serious complications, including death. Specific antiviral medication is available. This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by: Content on this website is provided for information purposes only. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not in any way endorse or support such therapy, service, product or treatment and is not intended to replace advice from your doctor or other registered health professional.
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Seniors Online Victorian government portal for older people, with information about government and community services and programs. Navigation Home Close Menu. Conditions and treatments Conditions and treatments. Allergic reaction to packaged food. Blood and blood vessels. Chemotherapy can damage cells in the mucous membrane so they become inflamed a condition called mucositis. This can lead to painful ulcers, bleeding and infection. Mucositis is usually temporary and goes away a few weeks after treatment.
Difficult or painful swallowing , heartburn or pain in the upper abdomen should be reported to the doctor or healthcare team. Pain caused by an inflamed esophagus called esophagitis can affect eating. You may need to change what you eat or take pain-relieving medicines if you have trouble swallowing or it hurts to swallow.
Report vaginal itching, discharge, odour, pain and bleeding to the doctor or healthcare team. Use cool compresses or a warm water bath to help relieve vaginal itching and pain. Avoid using scented tampons and feminine hygiene pads. If you develop a vaginal infection or have severe pain, your doctor may prescribe medicines to help. Some chemotherapy drugs can affect taste buds causing changes in taste. For example, you may find that meats have a metallic taste. Even foods that you normally crave, such as sweet or salty snacks, can taste bad.
You may become more sensitive to smells. It can take months for both the sense of smell and taste to return to normal after chemotherapy. Some drugs can cause skin problems or skin irritation. Skin changes can happen during and for some time after chemotherapy. Skin reactions can include redness, itching, dryness, rash or nail changes.
Some chemotherapy drugs cause eye changes, such as blurry vision, watery eyes and trouble wearing contact lenses. Tell the doctor or healthcare team if you have changes to your eyes. Some chemotherapy drugs can cause painful side effects, such as aching in the muscles and joints, headaches and stomach pains.
Pain may be felt as burning, numbness, tingling or shooting pains in the hands and feet called peripheral nerve damage. This type of pain can last long after treatment ends. The healthcare team will tell you what medicines to use to relieve the pain. Many chemotherapy drugs are given by an injection, usually into a vein intravenously, IV. Getting the needle or catheter into the vein may cause some discomfort or pain. There is a small risk that chemotherapy drugs will escape from the vein and leak into the surrounding tissues.
This is called extravasation. Some chemotherapy drugs irritate tissues. These drugs are called vesicants.
In some cases, chemotherapy drugs that escape from the vein can cause severe damage to the skin and surrounding soft tissue. Your healthcare team will monitor you for signs of extravasation. Tell your healthcare team if you develop redness, swelling, pain, burning or stinging at the injection site. An intravenous IV needle or catheter can cause the vein to become inflamed a condition called phlebitis.
The area around the insertion site or along the vein can become red, warm, tender or painful and swollen. The chances of developing phlebitis increase with the: Nurses often check IV sites for signs of phlebitis. If phlebitis occurs, the IV needle or catheter is usually removed and placed in another area. You may be given warm, moist compresses to help reduce inflammation. Some types of chemotherapy drugs can damage the inner ear, which can cause hearing loss or balance changes.
This usually goes away after treatment has ended, but your doctor may lower the dose of chemotherapy or change your treatment to prevent further damage to hearing. Some chemotherapy drugs can cause organ damage. The healthcare team takes steps to limit the damage to healthy cells, but organ damage can happen. Some of the organs that may be affected by chemotherapy include the: Some types of organ damage develop later than other types.
For example, some types of chemotherapy drugs raise the risk of heart and lung problems later in life, years after chemotherapy was given. Chemotherapy can cause you to have trouble thinking clearly and concentrating. Sometimes these effects happen long after treatment is finished.
Your healthcare team can suggest ways to help improve concentration and manage changes in memory. Things such as using lists, post-it notes, calendars and your mobile phone for reminders can help. Doing some mental exercises, eating well, and getting enough rest may also be useful. Read more about treatments for insomnia. Some chemotherapy medicines can also reduce fertility in men and women. Before starting treatment, ask your care team whether your fertility may be affected.
If you're at risk of infertility , they will discuss your options with you. Women may be able to have their eggs frozen to be used later in IVF. You should avoid becoming pregnant or fathering a child during your treatment, as chemotherapy medicines could harm the baby.
Use a barrier method of contraception, such as a condom. Having chemotherapy can be a frustrating, stressful and traumatic experience. Speak to your care team if you're struggling to cope emotionally. They can offer support and discuss possible treatment strategies. Joining a cancer support group may also help. Talking to other people in a similar situation can often reduce feelings of isolation and stress.
Side effects of chemotherapy
Treatments can cause a variety of side effects, from nausea and hot flashes to hair loss and joint pain. Learn more about breast cancer. Cancer treatments and cancer can cause side effects. Side effects are problems that occur when treatment affects healthy tissues or organs. How vulnerable you are to these side effects depends on many Nicotine replacement therapy does not influence enzyme activity; Diet.