Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to destroy cancer cells. Cancer cells are often fast-growing, unlike normal cells in the body. Typically, chemotherapy drugs treat many cancers, including leukemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, central nervous system tumors, and breast cancer.
How is Chemotherapy Given?
Chemotherapy is often given in cycles or treatment periods with rest periods in between. A typical cycle might be three weeks on and one week off chemotherapy drugs.
The way the drugs are given depends on the type of cancer you have and how it responds to treatments. The cancer center Newport Beach treatment options include:
1. Intravenously – Chemotherapy drugs are injected directly into the bloodstream.
2. Orally – Chemotherapy drugs can be taken as a pill or capsule
3. Topically – Chemotherapy applied to the skin as a cream or gel
4. Intrapleurally – Chemotherapy injected into the fluid around the lungs
5. Intrathecally – The chemotherapy drug is injected directly into the spinal fluid
How Often Will I Receive Chemotherapy?
The number of chemotherapy treatments you will receive depends on several factors, including your overall health and how well your cancer responds to treatment.
Chemotherapy can be given as an outpatient or inpatient depending on the patient’s symptoms, the type of cancer, and the kind of chemotherapy in use. Typically, chemotherapy can last hours to several days, and since many patients cannot work during this time, they may need to be admitted to the hospital.
How Will I Feel After Receiving Chemotherapy?
Most patients who receive chemotherapy experience side effects. Some common reactions include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite or taste changes
- Hair loss or thinning hair
In conclusion, chemotherapy is an excellent treatment for combating cancer. Side effects vary from patient to patient but can be managed by talking to your oncologist regarding symptom management.