CausesBy Mayo Clinic staff
It's not clear what causes signs and symptoms of memory problems in cancer survivors. Cancer-related causes could include:
- Hormone therapy
- Radiation therapy
- Stem cell transplant
Complications of cancer treatment
- Menopause (associated with hormone therapy)
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Sleep problems, such as insomnia
Emotional reactions to cancer diagnosis and treatment
- Inherited susceptibility to chemo brain
- Medications for other cancer-related signs and symptoms, such as pain medications
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- Fardell JE, et al. Chemotherapy and cognitive impairment: Treatment options. Nature Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics. 2011;90:366.
- Improving your concentration: Three key steps. CancerCare. http://www.cancercare.org/publications/71-improving_your_concentration_three_key_steps. Accessed Jan. 2, 2013.
- Combating chemobrain: Keeping your memory sharp. CancerCare. http://www.cancercare.org/publications/70-combating_chemobrain_keeping_your_memory_sharp. Accessed Jan. 2, 2013.
- Cognitive problems. Cancer.Net. http://www.cancer.net/all-about-cancer/treating-cancer/managing-side-effects/cognitive-problems. Accessed Jan. 2, 2013.
- Ginkgo. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Jan. 3, 2013.
- Vitamin E. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Jan. 3, 2013.
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- Chang G, et al. Mental status changes after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Cancer. 2009;115:4625.
- Moynihan TJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 5, 2013.