Learning Center Articles

Nervous System : Cancer

Nervous System
Intracranial PressureMay result from radiation edema in central nervous system.Monitor neurologic status.

May be controlled with corticosteroids.

Peripheral NeuropathyParesthesias, arelexia, skeletal muscle weakness, and smooth muscle dysfunction can occur as a side effect of plant alkaloids, taxanes, and cisplatinMonitor for these manifestations in patients on these drugs.

Consider temporary chemotherapy dose interruption or reduction until symptoms improve.

Anti-seizure drugs (e.g., gabapentin [Neurontin]) may be considered.

Cognitive Changes (“chemo brain”)Occur during and after treatment (especially with chemotherapy).

Difficulties in concentration, memory lapses, trouble remembering details, taking longer to finish tasks.

May happen quickly and last a short time. Sometimes people have mild long-term effects

Teach patients to do the following:

Use detailed daily planner.

Get enough sleep and rest.

Exercise brain (learn something new, do word puzzles).

Focus on one thing (no multi-tasking)