Cancer patients have unique needs when it comes to skin care. Medications affect skin quality and sensitivity, surgical procedures can create challenges, and some ingredients commonly found in skin care products should not be used on patients with cancer who are undergoing radiation.
There is a wealth of information about oncology patients and skin care, but the key message is that anyone working with cancer patients should be very careful and very aware of what products they are using, so as to not exacerbate any problems or create new skin issues.
While there are many people out there who can handle irritants or even toxins within skin care products without immediate problems cropping up, for a cancer patient who may have compromised skin or less of an immune system response, even a small amount of irritation can be excruciating. Worse yet, there are some skin care products which contain carcinogens, an obvious problem for cancer patients.
Anyone working with cancer patients and providing skin care needs to be very aware of ingredients, and seek out gentle, toxin-free options for topical use.
Specific Needs and Timing of Skin Treatments
Skin care providers should also consider the specific challenges cancer patients may face when it comes to treating and pampering their skin. Both chemotherapy and radiation can cause rashes, itchiness, peeling, and soreness on the face and body, depending on the type of cancer and treatment. Additionally, while radiation can cause dry or damaged skin, it’s critical that moisturizers are used with caution. Using moisturizers immediately before or after radiation treatment can exacerbate the problem.
Choosing skin care products for cancer patients takes extra knowledge and research. People undergoing cancer care and treatment may need special treatment for their skin, and getting the proper care and products can make a big difference.