Chemotherapy is a drug treatment to kill the cancer cells growing in the body with powerful medications. The treatment is done to treat cancer. There are various chemotherapy drugs available that can be used in combination or alone.
What is the need for Chemotherapy?
Chemo helps kill the cancer cells and this is the reason it is used as cancer treatment chemotherapy. There are different situations in which chemo is used for cancer people:
- Cancer treatment chemo can be the primary treatment to treat the problem.
- Chemo can be used after other treatments to kill the cancer cells which are present in the body. This is called ‘Adjuvant therapy’.
- Chemo treatment is used to shrink the tumor so that other treatments like radiation therapy and surgery are possible. This is called ‘Neoadjuvant therapy’.
- Chemo is helpful for the patients to get relief from the symptoms as the cancer cells are killed. This is called ‘Palliative chemotherapy’.
Well, there are other conditions for which chemotherapy is used like:
- Immune system disorders
For the overactive immune system, low doses of chemotherapy are helpful. This can treat conditions like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Bone marrow diseases
Chemo treatment can help the patient to prepare for the bone marrow transplant.
Risks factor Common side effects of chemo drugs or medications include:
- Hair loss
- Loss of appetite
- Mouth sores
- Easy bruising
Although, most of the side effects can be treated or prevented and they subside following treatment.
How to prepare for chemotherapy?
The doctor will give you specific instructions according to the drug you are prescribed and how they are being used. Here’s what you need to do:
- Get a device surgically inserted
If you are getting chemotherapy intravenously then you will recommend a catheter or pump inserted into the vein surgically, which is usually done in the chest.
- Visit your dentist
The doctor will check your teeth for signs of infection. Treating the existing problem will help to reduce the complications and the body’s ability to fight infection.
- Plan for side effects
You should ask your doctor about the side effects and then make the necessary arrangements. Like, it can result in infertility problems and then you can wish to choose the option to preserve sperm or egg. If the problem is causing hair loss then you can cover the head.
- Prepare for the treatment session
You should discuss with your doctor how you need to prepare for the treatment. This is helpful if you arrive for the treatment with ease. You might need to eat something if the chemo medications result in nausea.
What to expect?
The chemotherapy drug you will get will depend on the following factors:
- Cancer Type
- Overall health
- Previous cancer treatments
- Goals and preferences
- Cancer Stage
This way the doctor will plan the treatment along with suitable chemotherapy cost. Talk to your doctor to make an informed decision.
How are chemotherapy medications given?
There are different ways in which chemotherapy medications are given which include:
- Chemotherapy pills
- Chemotherapy Infusions
- Chemotherapy shots
- Chemotherapy creams
- Chemotherapy is given directly to treat cancer
How often is chemotherapy given?
The patient will get the treatment and chemo price according to the drug they receive, and the type of cancer. It is also kept in mind how your body is recovering with each treatment. The schedule and chemo cost will be different for every patient. The treatment can be continuous or it can be given on an alternate basis.
You need to meet the cancer doctor regularly. He will ask you about the side effects you are having and let you know how to control them. The way you are responding to the treatment will be adjusted accordingly.