Side Effect Management

It helps to learn more about the side effects from your treatment(s) before you begin, so you will know what to expect. When you know more, you can work with your health care team to manage your quality of life during and after treatment.

There are effective and readily available medications to address traditional side effects from cancer treatment (such as nausea, diarrhea, constipation and mouth sores.) Also, as newer 'targeted therapies' become available, they tend to leave people with fewer traditional side effects.

Keep in mind that everyone reacts differently to treatment and experiences side effects differently. There are coping mechanisms and strategies that can help.

Side effects experienced for the treatment of Eye Cancer vary. Following are the most common symptoms:

Surgery 
Surgery can lead to the loss of some or all of the vision in that eye. Enucleation results in complete and immediate vision loss in that eye. Other surgeries can also cause problems leading to a loss of vision, which can occur later on. In some cases, vision may have already been damaged or lost because of the cancer. Also, removal of the eyeball (enucleation) obviously can affect a person's appearance. As noted above, an artificial eye can be put in place to help minimize this.

Radiation Therapy
Radiation therapy may damage other parts of the eye, leading to problems such as cataracts, retinal detachment, glaucoma, and bleeding into the eye. These can result in loss of vision or other problems. The risk depends on the size and location of the tumor.

Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy has different side effects depending on the type and dose of drugs given and the length of time they are taken. These side effects can include hair loss, mouth sores, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, increased chance of infections (due to low white blood cell counts), easy bruising or bleeding (due to low blood platelet counts) and fatigue (due to low red blood cell counts.)

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