OSWEGO — In 2018, more than 250,000 new cases of breast cancer were expected to be diagnosed in women in the United States, and roughly one in eight women will develop breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. This means that over time, breast cancer will play a part in nearly everyone’s life.
After being diagnosed with breast cancer, there are several different treatments a person may go through. These can include surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy. Though powerful, these treatment options can be accompanied with side effects causing or exasperating wounds and other various conditions.
— Chemotherapy: Chemo can cause skin reactions including photosensitivity, nail changes, transient erythema, hyperpigmentation and palmar/plantar syndrome. Chemo can inhibit cell division and put the patient at a greater risk of infection.
— Surgery: Side-effects from surgery tend to result in wounds that are complicated and difficult to heal.
— Radiation: Long term effects of radiotherapy on the skin may include microvascular damage, skin atrophy and soft tissue fibrosis.
Some side effects associated with breast cancer treatments can be addressed with advanced wound care and, when appropriate, hyperbaric oxygen therapy at a Wound Care Center. HBOT addresses the lack of oxygen in the cells caused by radiation damage by increasing the amount of oxygen within the tissues to aid recovery.
This October, the Center for Wound Healing at Oswego Health wants to encourage people to raise awareness and get screened. If people have a hard to heal wound, they can reach the Wound Care Center at 315-326-3780 or visit them online at oswegohealth.org.