How to Overcome Cancer-Related Fatigue

Published on: 
Heal, Summer 2018, Volume 1, Issue 1

Who is at risk? What are the signs? And, maybe most important, how can it be managed to improve a person’s quality of life?

CANCER-RELATED FATIGUE IS often considered the most distressing side effect for patients and survivors of cancer and its treatment. It can plague a person from months to years.

Who is at risk? What are the signs? And, maybe most important, how can it be managed to improve a person’s quality of life?

In this issue’s cover story, a nearly 30-year survivor describes the “life-altering” fatigue she felt while undergoing treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. She shares how she had to learn to decipher what was “healthy people” fatigue versus what she was feeling.

Kathy LaTour, a two-time cancer survivor, speaks with experts who discuss the research behind cancer-related fatigue and offers practical solutions to help overcome this challenge experienced by so many.

Also in Heal®, Paralympian Bibian Mentel-Spee talks about her nine bouts with a rare cancer and how she never let it stop her from doing what she loved — snowboarding. After losing her leg from the disease and being told by her doctor that nothing more could be done, she defied the odds. Most recently, she took home two 2018 Paralympics gold medals.

“Good Morning America” and “20/20” news anchor Amy Robach sat down with Heal® and revealed who persuaded her, despite her hesitation, to get a mammogram in 2013 on live television in front of millions of people. It was just weeks after that Robach, then 40, learned she had breast cancer. She chose to have a double mastectomy — a radical move but one she discussed closely with her brother, who is an internist. That decision led to the discovery of another malignant tumor in her other breast. In the interview, Robach reflects on how the disease has changed her and the way she lives her life now.

In this issue, you’ll also learn about a program that puts cancer survivors in front of the classroom to teach medical and nursing students. The global outreach began in 2007; today, nearly 900 volunteers have reached more than 50,000 students, making them aware of the early and often silent symptoms of ovarian cancer.

These pages also include stories about body image and web-based intervention, the importance of therapy pets and what people like you #CanDoWithCancer.

We hope that you find both practical information and everyday inspiration — and as always, thank you for reading.