Itching caused by skin cancer or other forms of cancer is known as “pruritus”, which is its Latin name. For most people, pruritus is a mild irritation and discomfort. Others, however, experience it to such an extent that it is constant and becomes unbearable. When people experience uncontrolled itching, they can become restless, suffer from insomnia, feel low, and sometimes even experience depression. Additionally, if they scratch the itch, they can develop soreness of the skin, or even infections.

What Causes Skin to Itch with Skin Cancer?

So what causes skin to itch with skin cancer? Usually, it is because someone who goes through cancer treatment develops dry skin. In addition, it can also be caused by age, dehydration, hormonal changes, and simply the time of year. You must look at whether there are any environmental changes you can make, therefore.

What Causes Skin to Itch with Skin Cancer – Other Common Causes

Other causes of itchy skin in people with skin cancer include:

1. Jaundice

Jaundice, which happens when bile builds up in the body tissues and bloodstream. This is caused by a blockage in the bile system. Bile is full of yellow pigments that turn the whites of your eyes and your skin yellow, and it will make you feel very itchy. Jaundice can be caused by your cancer treatment, including any herbal drugs you are taking. Most commonly, it happens when there is a breakdown of red blood cells, or if you have an inflammation of the liver. You could also have gall stones, liver disease, or other illnesses that can cause a blockage in the bile duct. People undergoing skin cancer treatment are more likely to develop jaundice as well.

2. Allergies

Allergies, which are also common in people with skin cancer, particularly as they go through treatment. If you have just started a new type of treatment and you become itchy straight away, you must speak to the nurse or doctor who is in charge. It may be necessary for you to change your treatment, or to be administered drugs to help manage the symptoms of the allergy itself. It is most common for an allergic reaction to happen the second or third time you use the treatment.

3. Infections

Infections, which are also common in those currently undergoing skin cancer treatment. Because chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and cancer drugs are all aggressive treatment types, they can lead to an imbalance in the makeup of the skin, leading to further problems.

4. Skin Cancer

Skin cancer itself, as this can cause itching too. It isn’t known why this happens, but it is believed that tumors release substances into the body and the response to this is to itch. This usually happens on the chest and arm area. Usually, if you start to receive cancer treatment, then this itch will start to go away.

5. Cancer Treatments

Cancer treatments, with some causing generalized itching (all over the body), and some leading to itching in one area only. Usually, this comes with a rash. It is particularly common in biological and hormonal therapy. This itch is not indicative of an allergy, however.