Sign In
HomeCancerMedical oncologyGeneral advice and safety
General advice and safety


​Chemotherapy safety

​Chemotherapy is removed from your body through your body fluids. This includes your urine, faeces, vomit, semen and vaginal fluid. In most cases this takes seven days. To protect yourself and others, we recommend the following:

  • Double flush the toilet with the lid down
  • Wear gloves when handling soiled linen/clothing 
  • Use barrier contraception to protect your partner from exposure to chemotherapy
  • Chemotherapy is very harmful to growing babies. It is important that effective contraception is always used throughout your treatment.

Preventing infection

Patients receiving chemotherapy are at greater risk of getting an infection as the body’s immune system is lowered. To reduce the risk of infection, we recommend that you do the following: 

  • Always wash your hands before preparing food/eating, after going to the toilet and after being in public places
  • Avoid people with any known infections. For example, respiratory illnesses, diarrhoea, conjunctivitis, cold sores or chickenpox
  • Avoid crowds where possible. For example, shopping centres, public swimming pools, cinemas and public transport

General health advice​


  • Maintain a healthy diet (avoid grapefruit – it interacts with chemotherapy)
  • Limit alcohol intake
  • Quit smoking - For assistance with this, you can contact the QUIT line on 137 848​
  • Exercise everyday if possible
  • Rest as needed
  • Protect your skin from the sun when outside
  • Don’t start any new medications without checking with your treatment team first
  • We recommend our patients have COVID-19 and flu vaccinations​

For more information about treatment side-effects and management, please see the booklet PDF iconInformation for patients receiving cancer treatment.

Tips for staying well​​

For more information about general health and managing side effects please see the nutrition talks videos.

alternate text 47  

Support services

​Help and support through your treatment journey.


alternate text 48​​