How to handle summertime sunshine/tanning/vacations and self tanners after cancer treatment


Just wondering.

Once we have completed treatments, chemo and radiation,etc., how much sun is safe?

Do we need to avoid sun, or wear high sunblock?

What about vacations to tropical places? I know Linda has gone on a couple of vacations, do you lay in the sun, or seek cover, and wear sunscreen?

Also the pelvic area/tummy needs to be covered up from sunning forever, following radiation correct?

Is it ok to tan alittle bit? I have always had sensitive skin, and am afraid my skin will remain even a bit more sensitive now after the chemo, even tho' last chemo was in Nov 2010.

Also, what about the use of self tanners? Are they safe, or best to avoid because of the chemicals in them?

Thank you all and look forward to your feedback.



  • lindaprocopio
    lindaprocopio Member Posts: 1,980
    I'm guilty of all of the above.
    I used self-tanning lotion so that my legs wouldn't be pasty-white before I went to the Dominican Republic a couple weeks ago. I wore sunscreen (SPF 30) and a big hat and came back almost as white as I left even though I was reading on a lounge chair in the sun for many hours each day.

    They say chemo drugs can make you more sensitive to the sun, but that has not been my experience. I have been to the beach twice, and on a cruise, and to the Caribbean twice, since my chemo (and during my chemo!) I have a pool and I garden daily from spring to fall, and always have a tan all summer long, even using sun screen.

    I apologized to my gyne-onc about my suntan when I saw him after I came back from the beach last year, thinking he'd be displeased with me. He just replied "I LOVE tans!" and added, "I associate them with people getting on with LIVING."