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WHAT SURVIVORS SHOULD CONSIDER BEFORE EXERCISING

WHAT SURVIVORS SHOULD CONSIDER BEFORE EXERCISING

by Peter Green

3 months ago

  • Your cancer care team will check your blood counts during your treatment. Ask them about your results, and if it’s OK for you to exercise.
  • Do not exercise if you have a low red blood cell count (anemia).
  • If you have low white blood cell counts or if you take medicines that make you less able to fight infection, stay away from public gyms and other public places until your counts are at safe levels.
  • Do not exercise if the level of minerals in your blood, such as sodium and potassium, are not normal. This can happen if you have had a lot of vomiting or diarrhea.
  • If it’s OK with your doctor, drink plenty of fluids.
  • Do not exercise if you have unrelieved pain, nausea/vomiting, or any other symptom that causes you concern. Call your doctor.
  • Do not exercise above a moderate level of exertion without talking with your doctor first. Remember, moderate exertion is about as much effort as a brisk walk.
  • If you have a catheter or feeding tube, avoid pool, lake, or ocean water and other exposures that may cause infections. Also, do not do resistance training that uses muscles in the area of the catheter to keep from dislodging it. Talk with your cancer team about what’s safe for you.
  • To avoid skin irritation, people getting radiation should not expose skin in the treatment area to the chlorine in swimming pools.
  • If you feel very tired and don’t feel up to exercising you can try doing 10 minutes of light exercises every day. (Later we will discuss fatigue and exercise in more detail.)
  • Stay away from uneven surfaces or any weight-bearing exercises that could cause you to fall and hurt yourself.
  • Do not use heavy weights or do exercise that puts too much stress on your bones if you have osteoporosis, cancer that has spread to the bone, arthritis, nerve damage, poor vision, poor balance, or weakness. You may be more likely to hurt yourself or break a bone.
  • If you have numbness in your feet or problems with balance, you are at higher risk for falls. You might do better with a stationary reclining bicycle, for example, than a treadmill.
  • Watch for swollen ankles, unexplained weight gain, or shortness of breath while at rest or with a small amount of activity. Let your doctor know if you have any of these problems.
  • Watch for bleeding, especially if you are taking blood thinners. Avoid any activity that puts you at risk for falls or injury. If you notice swelling, pain, dizziness, or blurred vision, call your doctor right away.

Source: www.cancer.org

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