For 48 hours after receiving chemotherapy, patients and caregivers should follow these precautions:
Flush toilets twice each time they are used. If possible, patients should use a separate toilet from others in the home. Always wash hands with soap and water after using the toilet.
Caregivers must wear gloves when handling the patients’ blood, urine, stool, or emesis. Dispose of the gloves after each use and wash your hands.
After using any devices for bodily waste, patients should thoroughly wash their hands and the devices with soap and water. Dry the devices with paper towels, and discard the towels.
Any sheets or clothes soiled with bodily fluids should be machine-washed twice in hot water with regular laundry detergent. Do not hand wash. If you cannot wash them right away, place them in a sealed plastic bag.
Absorbable undergarments should be place in sealed plastic bags for disposal.
If caregivers accidentally come in contact with bodily fluids, they should wash the area of exposure several times with soapy water and inform their doctors on their next visit. A single exposure may not do much harm, but caregivers should take extra precautions to avoid repeated exposure.
Be sure that someone is with the patient, because more help may be needed at those times.
Watch for the any sign or symptom listed in the “When to Call Your Doctor” section on your drug sheet(s).
General Guidelines for When to Call Your Doctor
Any side effect that lasts more than 1 day
A fever of 100.5°F or higher, taken by mouth
Pain or redness at the IV site where the chemo was given
Inability to swallow or keep down liquids or your chemo pills