Many children with cancer experience fatigue during and following treatment. Children may describe fatigue as being tired and/or feeling weak. Common causes of fatigue, include:
  • Cancer treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation)
  • Low blood counts
  • Poor nutrition
  • Fever
  • Pain
  • Not getting enough sleep
  • Poor quality of sleep
  • Worry
  • Trying to do too much

Managing fatigue

Tell your healthcare provider if your child has fatigue. You can do many things to help your child fight fatigue.
  • Encourage physical activity every day.
  • A physical therapist can create an exercise program to increase your child’s strength and endurance.
  • If your child’s appetite is poor, offer healthy foods every two to three hours while awake. Try to make each snack as nutritious as possible. Talk to your nutritionist for ideas.
  • Discourage caffeine
  • Follow a regular bedtime routine
  • Get plenty of sleep each night
  • Alter the child's regular routines to avoid over extending, such as reducing attendance at school to half days.
If needed, work with your healthcare team to develop a plan to decrease pain.