Irritated sinuses with chemo?

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Question from Patti: I have advanced breast cancer in bones for three years, liver for one year. After AC chemo I had to switch to Taxol, now Taxotere. With Taxol and Taxotere, my sinuses have become dry, irritated, and swollen. My doctor says it's not the chemo. What to do?
Answers - Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. I have seen problems with Taxotere with sinuses, but patients usually describe small amounts of blood upon blowing their nose. Your doctor may be agreeable with you trying a saline nose spray, particularly one made for children.

A brief break from chemotherapy, if your doctor is agreeable, may help you determine the relationship between the chemotherapy and what sounds like a very troubling symptom.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. During the wintertime, the air in most people's homes becomes very dry. You may notice a dryness of your mouth, your nose, your skin, etc. If you have irritation of your nose and a cold, you might find that you have a little bleeding when dry tissues are irritated further.

Sometimes, these symptoms can be improved by using a humidifier or by simply putting trays of water on top of your radiator. You can also use Vaseline or a petroleum jelly on your lips and nostrils when you get a cold. Sometimes, certain chemotherapies can also irritate the mucous membrane inside your nose, mouth, vagina, etc. Ask your doctor about this.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Chemotherapy Updates featured Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about advances in chemotherapy treatment: different types of drugs and regimens, how to reduce or eliminate unpleasant side effects, and more.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in February 2002.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.

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