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Chemotherapy: What To Do While In Treatment

Symptoms Of Infection To Watch For During Chemotherapy

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© American Cancer Society 2010

Even if you are being extra careful, your body may not be able to fight infections when your white blood cell count is low. Be alert to the signs and symptoms that you might have an infection and check your body regularly for signs, paying special attention to your eyes, nose, mouth, and genital and rectal areas. The symptoms of infection include:

  • Fever of 100.5 degrees Fahrenheit or greater when your temperature is taken by mouth
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Loose stools (This can also be a side effect of chemotherapy.)
  • A burning feeling when you urinate
  • A severe cough or sore throat
  • Unusual vaginal discharge or itching
  • Redness, swelling, or tenderness, especially around a wound, sore, pimple, intravenous catheter site, or vascular access device
  • Abdominal pain

Report any signs of infection to your doctor immediately. If you have a fever, don't use aspirin, acetaminophen, or any other medicine to bring your temperature down without first checking with your doctor.

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