This area includes nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea (and related dehydration), constipation as well as reflux. These are all very common, and can all greatly effect your quality of life if you don't have control!
There are many lifestyle factors that can help these symptoms which are covered in the following eviQ patient information (click on the links):
- Nausea and Vomiting during Cancer Treatment
- Diarrhoea during Cancer Treatment
- Constipation during Cancer Treatment
- Managing the Side Effects of Chemotherapy
- Oesophagitis (Inflammation of the food pipe)
Medicine has come a long way in recent years, and with regard to nausea and vomiting, there is now so much on offer. As we specialise in over the counter products and the anti-nausea treatments are mainly on prescription, it is best you speak to you treating medical team and have a step-wise plan in place to prevent and treat nausea.
Diarrhoea can be treated with medications such as loperamide (which you can buy from your pharmacy). It is important to take this as directed, and if you're having more than four bouts of diarrhoea per day contact your Doctor. If chronic diarrhoea is a problem, sometimes a fibre supplement such as Benefiber® can actually help to bulk things up a bit. It is also very important to be aware of the risk of dehydration with vomiting and diarrhoea. Our Electrolyte products are fantastic for keeping hydrated and the icy poles are great if you're also having some mouth problems. If chronic diarrhoea is leaving the sensitive skin around your bottom sore and inflamed, something like Olive & Bee Intimate Cream can be applied anywhere and provide much needed relief to the area.
With regards to constipation, we recommend a stepwise approach, however this is dependant on the cause and duration of the constipation. If this is an ongoing chronic problem, a fibre supplement such as Benefiber® should be added into the diet. If this isn't enough, a macrogol based laxative such as Macrovic or OsmoLax Powder is the first thing to try. Some people find that OsmoLax Powder tastes better as it only contains the macrogol, without the salty flavour of electrolytes (so you can add it to any hot or cold drink). Following this, a stimulant such as Lax Tab® can also be added in.
If constipation is a severe acute problem (eg. after chemotherapy), it is important that this is assessed by you healthcare provider with specific advice and a management plan provided for treatment and future prevention.
If reflux or heartburn is a regular problem, it is best to speak to you Doctor and find out the best way to manage. However for occasional use, an antacid formulation such as Gaviscon® Dual Action can help to reduce acid as well as form a raft at the top of the stomach to reduce reflux of stomach juices.
If you need advice, please email us or speak to your treating medical team.
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