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SNIPSTART Find A Radiation Oncologist

Side Effects

This list doesn't represent all of the possible side side effects. Please talk to your radiation oncologist about your specific diagnosis to learn more about how likely these side effects may be for you.

View the visual side effects chart.

Short term side effects

Side effects are usually temporary and usually go away shortly after treatment ends. Below is a list of possible side effects you might notice during your treatment.

More likely
  • Skin irritation/redness
  • Fatigue
  • Bone pain (more common with SBRT)
  • Itching of skin
  • Nausea/diarrhea
Less likely
  • Sore throat (depending on area being treated)
  • Increase skin warmth (more common with SBRT)
  • Difficulty swallowing 
  • Swelling
  • Increased urinary frequency 
  • Low blood counts

Long term side effects

After the short-term side effects of radiation therapy resolve, others may become noticeable months or years later.

More likely
  • Darkening of skin
  • Fracture (more common with SBRT)
Less likely
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Swelling
  • Mild electric sensations down spine
  • Increased skin firmness