How to look after the skin during radiotherapy?

It should be noted that there is no consensus on preventive or curative treatments for dermatitis caused by radiotherapy. However, some hygiene rules are essential to limit the severity of skin toxicities. It is important to avoid wearing tight clothing in contact with the treated area, to avoid cotton clothing, and to avoid using deodorant on the treated area (particularly breast cancer). The radiation oncologist may suggest preventive creams or ointments that often contain hyaluronic acid. To patients who develop dermatitis during radiotherapy, various creams may be prescribed to help healing (e.g. Flammazine®, Cicalfate®, Ialuset Plus®). Sometimes, a nurse will apply creams or ointments and special dressings (local care).

In all cases, sun exposure should be avoided during and for several months (usually one year) after radiation therapy to limit the exposure of the treated area to other rays (UVA and UVB for the sun) that can aggravate the symptoms and hinder healing.