About cancer fatigue

Most people with cancer have cancer related fatigue, but each person’s experience is different. Cancer related fatigue can come and go, be mild or severe, last a short or long time. There are many ways you can reduce cancer related fatigue to help yourself feel better. Knowing how to manage cancer related fatigue can improve your physical and emotional well-being, and quality of life.

What is cancer related fatigue?

Cancer related fatigue:

  • is a feeling of tiredness and exhaustion, in the body and mind
  • is related to cancer or its treatment
  • is not related to recent activity or exertion
  • does not get better with rest or sleep
  • interferes with a person’s ability to function in daily life

Cancer related fatigue is the most common symptom felt by cancer patients. It can occur at any time during treatment and can continue after cancer treatment ends.

This is different from fatigue you may have felt at other times in your life. Unlike cancer related fatigue, regular fatigue is a feeling of being tired and having little energy, but it gets better with rest and sleep.

Cancer related fatigue can be caused by cancer, cancer treatment or many other factors that happen at the same time. It may not be possible to know the exact cause of fatigue.