Dehydration is a serious concern for cancer patients, because many of the side effects of chemotherapy treatment rob the body of water and electrolytes.
The body uses water throughout the day that needs to be replaced, and during chemotherapy, this loss of water is often sped up for a number of reasons. For instance, common side effects like vomiting, fever, sweating and diarrhea, all speed up fluid and electrolyte loss.
Thus, keeping up with the body’s constant hydration needs can be a challenge for patients undergoing chemotherapy treatment.
Why Does Chemotherapy Increase Dehydration Risk?
Vomiting and diarrhea caused by chemotherapy are two of the most common risk factors for developing dehydration. Both of these side effects of chemotherapy cause the body to lose water and electrolytes faster than they can be replaced.
Therefore, severe or prolonged episodes should be of special concern. Patients should consult with their doctors if symptoms persist for an extended period.
Additionally, cancer treatments can also lead to a lack of appetite and thirst. Not drinking enough fluids is another cause of dehydration. And this can be especially difficult for patients undergoing chemotherapy. For example, in addition to a lack of thirst, the sore throat/mouth commonly experienced by chemotherapy patients, as well as severe nausea, discourage the drinking of fluids.
What Are the Symptoms of Dehydration?
Although symptoms change from person to person, there are several signs that can indicate the need to rehydrate.
For example, dehydration is often accompanied by dizziness, dry or sticky mouth and dry skin. Additionally, one of the most reliable indicators is dark, concentrated urine. Other common symptoms include:
- Decreased urine output
With symptoms of severe dehydration, contact a doctor. These symptoms include a faster-than-normal heartbeat, confusion, blue lips, lethargy, excessive tiredness, low blood pressure, fever, rapid breathing and delirium in extreme cases.
Why ORS Makes Sense for Cancer Patients
An oral rehydration solution like Drip Drop is as effective, if not more effective, than an IV in treating mild to moderate dehydration, according to one recent study. And that’s great news because IVs are invasive and painful. They’re also expensive. And they require a trip to a hospital or clinic.
Conversely, Drip Drop and other ORS can be administered at home at the onset of dehydration. They’re extremely affordable, just a few dollars per dose, and they’re effective in replacing fluids and electrolytes.
Drip Drop contains a plentiful dose of electrolytes that can help patients replace those lost due to diarrhea and vomiting. It is also formulated to speed up the absorption of water into the bloodstream – faster rehydration – and help promote fluid retention.
The difference between Drip Drop and other ORS's is the taste. Drip Drop tastes great, which can be beneficial for those suffering from nausea.
Simply put, Drip Drop can be used to help manage dehydration caused by chemotherapy. It helps rehydrate quickly; it’s affordable; and it’s easy to administer.