How to Manage Skin Problems From Cancer Treatment


Today we will discuss the skin problems from cancer treatment and unveil how you can manage them. That’s because patients often worry when the side effects of cancer treatment kick in.

Cancer treatment can result in various skin problems like itching, rash, dryness, pigmentation, light sensitivity, nail problems, skin sores, and other forms of allergic reactions. Fortunately, we have the answers to this cancer treatment issue.

In this blog, we will discuss these skin problems and also recommend ways to manage them as covered in our YouTube video on “How to manage skin problems from cancer treatment.”

Causes of skin problems in cancer patients

Skin problems can result from;

  • Chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy targeted therapy drugs
  • Radiation therapy and
  • Organ transplant therapy.

For instance, cancer rash is a common skin problem among cancer patients during chemotherapy. There is a possibility that patients may experience a cancerous rash or cancer effects on the skin.

Manage Skin Problems From Cancer Treatment

There is no need to panic over rash during cancer treatment. This is because many cancer patients experience chemo rash associated with chemotherapy treatment. The best way to find out what causes your rash is by contacting a doctor and discussing your symptoms.

Cancer, itchy skin, and chemotherapy usually go hand in hand. This is especially so if a patient is undergoing more than one cancer treatment. The reason behind this itchiness is that chemotherapy can cause the nerve cells in the skin to degenerate leading to adverse side effects.

Cancerous sores

Due to cancer treatment, the skin might also become itchy and necessitate scratching. Sometimes, in the process of scratching the skin, sores might develop. Cancer skin sores are usually triggered by the body’s immune system.

Cancer sores normally take a lot of time to heal, and this can be a major concern for cancer patients because postponing cancer treatment also presents a variety of health risks.

The patient needs to identify the root cause of the particular skin problem, whether it’s radiation therapy or chemotherapy treatment, or something else. However, identifying the cause is just the first step toward managing the problems; it is important to know how to deal with them.

How to manage the skin problems

Treating your skin every day will also go a long way in managing skin problems.

Here are some tips that might help you deal with skin problems in cancer patients:

  1. Manage rashes; Avoid any irritants such as soap, detergents, and creams with fragrances, wash skin with warm water and use moisturizing lotion at least twice a day to help keep the surface of your skin moist and soft. Your doctor may give prescriptions on how to use the lotion and also prescribe antihistamine pills to relieve itching. We recommend using moisturizers with urea, salicylic acid, and lactic acid.
  2. To manage light sensitivity; Apply sunscreen with SPF 15 or above to shield your skin from the sun. Use protective clothes and hats since the sun’s ultraviolet rays may make your skin problems worse and can cause serious damage to your skin.  
  3. To manage itching; The doctor may prescribe a steroid cream, a medicine that may help to relieve itching or rash. Getting a corticosteroid anti-inflammatory medications prescription may also manage the rash.
  4. To manage nail problems; Avoid wearing tight shoes, wear gloves while working and keep nails short and moisturized to mitigate any potential nail problems.
  5. For effective management of the condition; Carefully watch out for skin infections and contact your doctor in case you develop fever, swelling, and redness among other signs. 


It is important that you keep in touch with your healthcare team and also let the doctor know of any moisturizers that you are using. You can also download the OncoPower App where our experts offer free consultation services. On the app you can seek any clarifications about conditions or problems experienced after cancer treatment. You will also learn more on what to do during and after cancer treatment from our medical team through the OncoPower Website.

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