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Fever, Sweats, and Hot Flashes (PDQ®): Supportive care - Patient Information [NCI] - Overview

Fever, sweats, or hot flashes may be side effects of cancer or its treatment.

In patients with cancer, fever may be caused by infection, a tumor, or reactions to drugs or blood transfusions.

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Talking with the Health Care Team

Patients and family caregivers can get ready for medical appointments. It is helpful for patients and caregivers to plan ahead for doctor visits. The following may help you get the most out of these visits: Keep a file or notebook of the patient's medical information that includes test and procedure dates, test results, and other records. Bring this file with you to the medical appointment. Keep a list of names and doses of medicines and how often they are taken. Bring this list with you...

Read the Talking with the Health Care Team article > >

Sweating is the body's way of lowering body temperature by causing heat loss through the skin. In patients with cancer, sweating may be caused by fever, a tumor, or cancer treatment.

Hot flashes can also cause too much sweating. They may occur in natural menopause or in patients who have been treated for breast cancer or prostate cancer.

Fever, sweats, and hot flashes affect quality of life in many patients with cancer.

A treatment plan to help manage fever, sweats, or hot flashes is based on the patient's condition and goals of care. For some patients, relieving symptoms and improving quality of life is a more important goal than treating the fever to prolong life.

This summary describes the causes and treatment of fever, sweats, and hot flashes in cancer patients.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

    Last Updated: September 04, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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