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Smoking & drinking alcohol during treatment

Smoking & drinking alcohol during treatment

Posted by monicawidjaja1 on Jan 24, 2012 11:38 am

can cancer pt still drink alcohol and smoke ? anybody knows the answer ? the answer of her nurse was ... you can not stop living ! what you guys think ? let me know ...thanks 

RE: Smoking & drinking alcohol during treatment

Posted by girlwiththeblackberet on Jan 24, 2012 5:32 pm

Hi there,
The Society’s Cancer Encyclopedia has information on:
Drinking alcohol during treatment
How quitting smoking benefits people with cancer

My Mom liked the occasional galss of wine or beer but when she got sick she lost her taste for it. She also had to use oxygen tanks. While she was a non-smoker the stories the oxygen supplier told me about explosive mishaps by smokers using the tanks were just a bit scary.

RE: Smoking & drinking alcohol during treatment

Posted by heather1 on Jan 26, 2012 1:14 pm

you could check out this discussion from a few months ago. Several members shared their experience with drinking after treatment. Not quite the same as your question, but interesting to read!

RE: Smoking & drinking alcohol during treatment

Posted by Tulip on Feb 4, 2012 2:46 am

Personally and professionally, as a nurse and cancer patient myself, knowing that once your diagnosed with Cancer and the risk of re-occurance is always a possibilty.... why one would risk increasing those odds of a re-occurance by continuing to be exposed to known cancerous agents?? Especially if prognosis is good for recovery!!!

If, however her treatment is palliative (to control pain etc) and not to cure, as a nurse I would agree with the nurse your friend/family consulted...if it gives her pleasure and eases her anxiety she might as well continue.   Although nausea, altered appetite and ability to taste as well as the challenge of pain management that is associated with any treatment, may reduce her desire for both significantly.  

Either way it is a personal decision and one worth exploring with her Medical Team. If her cancer is considered curable or if she is to undergo any surgery.  Her team needs to know just how much she drinks or smokes as it can compromise treatment as well as her prognosis or recovery. 

Cancer or not, anyone having surgery needs to be honest about their smoking, alcohol or recreational drug use as frequency of use has a direct relationship on the ease of recovery post surgery; in terms of pain management, risk of respiratory complications, risk of post surgical blood clots, nausea and withdrawal.  

(Doctors and Nurses do not shame or judge a persons use of these substances and any information they share is confidential)

Hope that helps to clarify things. 


Tracy Tulip65 SCC Tongue 2011 No chemo / no radiation