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Chemo and Swimming??

LivinginNH's picture
LivinginNH
Posts: 1270
Joined: Apr 2010

Quick question: Has anyone ever been told by their doctor that they shouldn't swim while on chemo? Summer is rapidly approaching and we're trying to think of things to do with the kids that aren't terribly strenuous. The kids love to swim, but I'm a bit concerned that the bacteria in the water (pool/lake/ocean) might lead to an infection that Rick wouldn't be able to fight off with his weakened immune system.(Or am I just being overprotective...)
Thanks! Cynthia

HollyID's picture
HollyID
Posts: 940
Joined: Dec 2009

about even sitting in the hot tub. He wasn't too thrilled that I even wanted to do that... but the only person that can really answer your questions is your onc. Maybe someone else around here can help you, too.

abmb's picture
abmb
Posts: 311
Joined: Sep 2009

Hi, Cynthia, my husband started his chemo last June, and we have a pool in our yard and he went swimming all the time. I just limited his time in the sun because of the risk of getting a burn. We even went on vacation and he went swimming and in a hot tub. His onc never told him not to go swimming or anything. This is what he did, doesn't mean it is for everyone, I would still check with our onc., he knows your husband's condition better than anyone. Take care. Margaret

janklo
Posts: 23
Joined: Mar 2010

My daughter has her port, she started her chemo in March, so she will have it through August. She did ask her oncologist and she said it was ok to go swimming, just cover it over with a clear piece of tagmet or some type of bandage. She said it would be ok like in a private pool or their neighborhood pool, some place that had good cleaning regime. Probably not in a lake or somewhere without controlled cleaning. So I would ask the doc, but I think it would be ok!

Brenda3.16
Posts: 211
Joined: May 2009

I went swimming last summer in my pool, hotel pools , hotel hot tubs and the ocean. My onc never said anything about it. I was careful not to be in the sun too long without sunscreen.

LivinginNH's picture
LivinginNH
Posts: 1270
Joined: Apr 2010

Thanks everyone! I'll feel much better now when the kids beg to go to a water park this summer. So now even if he can't go down the Kamikaze slide, he can at least float around in the pool! :-) Thanks again, Cyn

HollyID's picture
HollyID
Posts: 940
Joined: Dec 2009

that others would come up with the right answer!! Enjoy the water. I know I have loved having my hot tub!

Kathleen808's picture
Kathleen808
Posts: 2278
Joined: Jan 2009

Hi Cynthia,
Dick has been on chemo for the past year. We live in Hawaii and the water is a huge part of our lives. While on chemo Dick has continued to surf, dive, boat, fish, swim and do just about everything. Being in the water helps him feel healthy and this is a huge part of his journey. He usually unhooked on Thursday and was back in the water by Friday.
Enjoy the summer! :)

Aloha,
Kathleen

PhillieG's picture
PhillieG
Posts: 4664
Joined: May 2005

I swim all summer and all I was told was to watch the sun. Wear sunscreen. I did have surgery one summer so I had to wait a bit until things healed but otherwise you can't keep me out of the water

VeronicaBlades
Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2011

Swimming is actually good for cancer patient. Can help them improve their muscles and bring back the strength in them. Also, swimming is a good source of hobby while you are in your home recovering from your illness.

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 2746
Joined: May 2009

At some point in my research, I read that the clorine in the pool is being sucked in by your skin. Not a good thing. I would ask your ONC.

PhillieG's picture
PhillieG
Posts: 4664
Joined: May 2005

I wouldn't sit in a public/spa hot tub even if I were wearing a scuba dry suit!
It's a giant petri dish.

I would watch heavily chlorinated pools but you never know, maybe chlorine is the next cancer killer. I always keep my pool on the lite side as far as chemicals go. Swimming is great though, once the foot of ice melts I'll think more about swimming. I can't wait to kayak again. Not in my pool, in the lake
;-)

thxmiker's picture
thxmiker
Posts: 1201
Joined: Oct 2010

The recommendation from my Onc was not to sit in public hot tubs. Our personal pool was not a problem for him.

I recommend that you consult your oncologist and ask them any question(s) that you have. The first 3 times we saw my oncologist we had lists of questions. (Seriously we had lists. That will teach him for taking on two programmers for a client.) My oncologist told us not to be embarrassed about any questions or concerns that we have, just ask.

Best Always, mike

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
pete43lost_at_sea
Posts: 3915
Joined: Nov 2010

had some issues with bags coming off after swimming.
its been very relaxing and a good workout.

trying to get up to 40 laps which is 2 km per day 4 days a week.

of course check with your onc, but remmber they are human and doctors and don't know everything.

pete

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 2746
Joined: May 2009

http://www.cancerwa.asn.au/resources/cancermyths/chlorine-cancer-myth

http://cancer.about.com/b/2010/09/15/chlorine-in-pool-may-raise-cancer-risk.htm

pepebcn's picture
pepebcn
Posts: 6352
Joined: Aug 2010

every week end from may to September , swimming every day last two summers, both in chemo, also have a lot of sun ! very tanned ! Nurses were a bit piss off but talking to the doctor, told me the reality , the thing that can happen were just some darker spots on my body for life, so I choose to feel tanned good face and feel healthy in stead of typical green face from chemo and I survived , and not even one spot!.
Hugs!

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