How long before radiotherapy after chemo

Hi Ladies

Could you tell me how long you waited after finishing chemo before starting radiotherapy. I don’t finish chemo until Aug but am trying to think of the best week to book a family holiday. Did anyone go on holiday straight after chemo finished or did you wait until six weeks after once the risk of infection was back to normal.


Joemic x 

I don’t mean to be negative but I think you should bear in mind that you might not feel like going away soon after chemo. If you finish in August I assume you either haven’t started yet or only recently so the cumulative effects are an unknown at the moment.

Personally, I’d wait and see how you feel befote you commit.


My radiotherapy started 4 weeks after chemo. Personally I wouldn’t risk it. You may still need to recover from the chemo and your immune system will be low.

Sue x 



i had chemo first, then a 4 week gap before surgery, then a 5 week gap until rads. I went away for a family holiday 2 weeks after my final chemo, and then 3 weeks after surgery, and then one week after rads. They were all uk based 7-10 day holidays, mainly visiting friends and family, so that I knew if I really felt unwell, I could shorten the trip and get home easily. I was absolutely fine after chemo and surgery, but had skin problems a couple of weeks after rads finished, when I was on holiday in the uk, so was glad I hadn’t gone further afield. I did go to Portugal about 6-7 weeks after rads finished and I was fine.

Everyone is different through and after treatment, but my onc’s advice was to go on trips only if I felt well enough, and he suggested the best time was before starting rads.

The best person to ask is your oncologist or your adjuvant oncology nurse. They know your particular cancer best and I reckon they have a pretty clear idea of how you specifically will respond to things, presumably from years of experience. 


I finished my chemotherapy four weeks ago but some side effects appeared afterwards (peripheral neuropathy, which was barely noticeable during the chemo period), which I’m told is not unusual but I certainly wasn’t expecting. I really thought the end of chemo was the end of that hideous time but it isn’t. I started radiotherapy last week, which is within the NICE guidelines. I was told about 4 weeks is the recommended maximum delay but that an additional week or so is fine if necessary. 


As for holidays, it all depends on how you get on with the chemo. You’re in the early stages. If it’s plain-sailing and you have the energy, a holiday will do you the world of good so long as you aren’t the one doing all the work. How supportive are your family in terms of taking on your usual tasks? YOU need to recuperate, be pampered and psych yourself up for the next stage. It takes 4 to 6 weeks for your immune system to recover its basic strength after chemo ends (that is a week after your final treatment if you’re on weekly chemos, 2-3 weeks if you’re on the 3-week cycle) and nasty surprises can still come when you’re feeling fit as a fiddle so you still have to be a little cautious and have your thermometer to hand! I agree with the others here - stay local. It also means no hassle over health insurance. Good luck Joemic - sounds like you’re doing well!