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Abdominal or pelvic radiotherapy side effects

You might have side effects such as diarrhoea and bladder irritation if you're having radiotherapy to the pelvic area (area in between your hips) or abdomen (tummy). 

Radiotherapy can also cause some general side effects, such as tiredness.

Diarrhoea

It is normal to have diarrhoea during or after radiotherapy treatment to your abdomen (tummy) or pelvis (area between your hips). You might also have stomach cramps and wind.

Sickness and weight loss

Radiotherapy to the tummy (abdomen) area can make you feel and be sick. This might last for a few weeks after the treatment. This sickness can then cause you to lose weight. 

Bladder irritation and pain

Having radiotherapy to the pelvis (area between the hip bones) might affect your bladder and make you feel as though you need to pass urine more than usual. Find out about what you can to help with this. 

Pain

You might have pain after radiotherapy to pelvis. The pelvis is the area between the hip bones. This can happen some time after your radiotherapy has finished.

Women's sex life and fertility

Radiotherapy to your lower tummy (abdomen) or pelvis can affect your fertility and sex life.

Men's sex life and fertility

Radiotherapy to your lower tummy (abdomen) or pelvis can affect your fertility and sex life. Problems can include pain during ejaculation and difficulty getting an erection.

Last reviewed: 
28 Jan 2019

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