Changes in your sex life after eye cancer

Not everyone with eye cancer will have changes in sexual desire or how they feel about themselves sexually. You might not notice any changes at all. But you might find cancer changes your body image affecting the way you feel about yourself and sex.

Some people lose interest in sex and feel very tired. But some people say that they want to have sex more than usual. If you are in a relationship, a crisis can sometimes bring couples very close together.

As people are so different and have different sexual needs, it is impossible to say exactly how eye cancer will affect your sexuality and sex life. If you are in a loving relationship your concerns may be different from someone who is single.

If your feelings about your body and having sex change during your cancer treatment, it doesn't mean that it will last forever. If you are able to talk to your partner, doctor or nurses about your worries it can ease them. They may be able to suggest ways to help improve any problems you're having. 

How eye cancer can affect your sex life

Changes in your appearance and sight may make you feel less confident about sex. If you have surgery to remove an eye and have an artificial eye you may worry about how this looks to your partner.

Although other people may not notice you have an artificial eye, you know that you have one. This can take time to come to terms with. If surgery has affected other parts of your face and you are not happy with how you look, you may be able to have further surgery to help correct this.

Getting help and support

Many problems with sex after cancer will get better with time and a little patience. There is help available for you. 

Remember problems with sex are very common, even for people who do not have cancer. They are just not always talked about much.

Talk to your surgeon or specialist nurse about any worries you have about your appearance. Talking about sex can be difficult and many people find it very embarrassing. It might take courage to bring the subject up. Sometimes your questions can be answered there and then. If not, or if you feel that your cancer doctor or nurse is uncomfortable talking about sex, then you can ask about finding a counsellor or therapist. 

Talking to a counsellor or sex therapist can help you to find ways of overcoming difficulties. You can see a sex therapist if you are single. If you are in a relationship, you can go alone or with your partner. It might be useful to talk things through as a couple, if you can.

If you are able to talk to your partner about your worries, you will both gradually get used to your new situation and things will feel less awkward. A caring and loving partner can help to ease your concerns, so it is important to include them and try talking to them about how you feel.

Cancer Research UK nurses

For support and information, you can call the Cancer Research UK information nurses on freephone 0808 800 4040, from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. They can give advice about who can help you and what kind of support is available.
  • Man Cancer Sex
    Katz, A 
    Hygeia Media, 2010

  • Woman cancer sex
    A Katz 
    Hygeia Media, 2010

Last reviewed: 
12 Nov 2021
Next review due: 
12 Nov 2024

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