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Can Radiation Therapy That Was Given on the Head Cause Migraines?

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Can Radiation Therapy That Was Given on the Head Cause Migraines?

Radiation therapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses x-rays, photons or other types of radiation to shrink or kill cancer cells. It often works in combination with surgery or chemotherapy to treat certain cancers; it may even be given before surgery in order to make the tumor smaller or afterward to prevent recurrences.

When receiving radiation therapy to the head, neck or brain, your doctor may administer special forms of X-rays or photons that target only the tumor while sparing healthy tissue around it. These treatments can be given as a single session or over several weeks or months; you must remain still during each one so that the beam reaches the same spot each time.

The amount of radiation or photons given depends on the type and size of cancer. Your doctor may use special software to adjust the dose to minimize damage to nearby healthy tissues and cells.

Many side effects of radiation therapy are temporary and will dissipate within a few weeks or months after treatment has ended. However, some may take longer to go away or may even persist permanently; these include fatigue, irritability, nausea or vomiting.

Fatigue is the most common side effect of radiation therapy. Usually, you will feel fatigued after your treatment is complete; however, you may continue to feel tired for several weeks or months following completion.

Radiation therapy often leads to mood changes, including increased irritability and difficulty with concentration. Some people even experience feelings of depression or sadness after receiving radiation treatments.

Maintaining a nutritious diet while on radiation therapy is important to help keep you energetic and prevent feeling hungry or weak. It’s also wise to have nutritious snacks on hand in case you experience hunger pangs during treatment.

Nausea is a common side effect of radiation therapy that may start several days before or during treatment. While there are medications available to help relieve nausea and vomiting, they cannot guarantee complete relief.

Skin reactions are another common radiation therapy side effect. Some people develop dry, peeling patches of skin that look sunburned or swollen; others experience sores inside their mouths.

Hair loss is a rare but potential side effect of radiation therapy to the scalp or brain. Your hair may fall out in clumps during treatment, but should regrow once your treatment has ended.

Headaches are a less common but still painful side effect of radiation to the head, neck or brain. Not only can they be excruciatingly painful, but they may have an effect on quality of life too; so be sure to inform your doctor if you experience any new or worsening headaches.

If you suffer from migraines, discuss with your doctor if taking medication is necessary to treat them. Your physician can either provide a migraine preventive drug or suggest taking a daily pill to reduce the number of attacks that occur.

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