Paying attention to your skincare during radiotherapy ensures protection and success

Radiotherapy is an indispensable part of modern cancer medicine – the skin can be protected in advance

Radiotherapy can reach cancer cells directly in the tumor, thus promoting healing. However, radiation always passes through the skin first of all before penetrating the body. Skincare during radiotherapy can help you to protect the skin prior to radiation and to prevent irritations during radiotherapy. In the meantime, it has been scientifically proven that skincare during radiotherapy demonstratively relieves skin irritations or even prevents them, in addition to improving the general condition of the patient.

Skincare during radiotherapy – what you can do yourself

Avoid thermal stimuli through:
– Sunbathing
– Solariums
– Hot water bottles
– Heat pads
– Saunas
– Mud baths
– Ice packs
– Cold wind

Avoid chemical stimuli through:
– Wet shave
– Deodorant
– Perfume
– Disinfectant
– Make-up
– Residue of detergents in clothes

Avoid mechanical stimuli through:
– Tight-fitting clothing
– Clothes made of artificial fibers
– Coarse and itchy clothes
– Plaster
– Massage
– Jewelery

Correct skincare during radiotherapy: Most importantly, shower the irradiated area of skin as briefly as possible. Use shampoos, shower gels and creams recommended by your physician. Preferably, mild products possibly with a moisturizing effect are important for skincare during radiotherapy. Apply creams with fingertips only – do not rub in. Caution: Skincare during radiotherapy also means that you are not allowed to use care products on the marks made for radiation. They can become invisible or blurry and they will have to be measured all over again. Another important note for skincare during radiotherapy: Never use care products that contain metals such as zinc, copper or silver – these metals spread radiation and lead to a higher strain to the skin. Take care of your skin at least two weeks before the treatment, twice per day in the radiation field with proper care products. If the skin reacts during the radiation process, reduce the frequency of your showers – every two days during this period is enough – for your skincare during radiotherapy. Itching in the areas of radiated skin can be alleviated through moisture packages containing an isotonic salt solution – leave the package on the skin only for about one to two minutes, as otherwise the skin will get too soft. For more tips on skincare during radiotherapy, speak to your physician directly or go to the pharmacy.

Remember that: Precise positioning and immobilization before radiation help ensure your safety and protect healthy tissue – as well as your skin. The Radiotherapy Patient System RPS helps your treatment team to ensure that your position under the linear accelerator is optimized and to help keep you safe. Would you like to show the RPS to your physician? Then send us an email to – we will be glad to send you the documents.