Cancer Fatigue

What is Cancer Related Fatigue?

Cancer related fatigue (CRF- sometimes simply called “cancer fatigue”) is one of the most common side effects of cancers and its treatment. It is often described as “paralyzing.” Usually, it comes on suddenly, does not result from activity or exertion, and is not relieved by rest or sleep. It may not end – even when treatment is complete.

Energy Conservation During cancer Fatigue:

Scheduled Rest:

Identify effects of your environment that may cause cancer-related fatigue:


Nutrition to combat cancer fatigue:

Basic Calorie needs:

Protein rebuilds and repairs damaged (and normally aging) body tissue:

Fluid Needs:

Cancer Related Fatigue and Exercise:

Decreased physical activity, which may be the result of illness or of treatment, can lead to tiredness and lack of energy. Scientists have found that even healthy athletes forced to spend extended periods in bed or sitting in chairs develop anxiety, depression, weakness, fatigue, and nausea. Regular moderate exercise can prevent these feelings, and help a person feel energetic and stay active. Even during cancer therapy, it is often possible to continue exercise. Any kind of exercise is OK. Walking, stationary bike, or swimming (if the immune system is OK) are examples of types of exercise.

Talk to your Health Care Providers:

There is not single medication available to treat fatigue. However, there are medications available that can treat some of the underlying causes. Make sure you speak with your health care professional here at Charleston Hematology Oncology Associates if you are feeling fatigued.