Chemotherapy helps to kill cancer cells that have spread (metastasized) to parts of the body far away from the original. It helps in eliminating cancer cells that are spread to the parts of the body even if they are far away from the place of the original tumor. It is the use of any drug to kill the cancer cells and treat any cancer disease. Chemo can work throughout your whole body unlike other therapies like Surgery and radiation therapy which only remove, kill, or damage cancer cells in a certain area.
Chemotherapy helps to kill cancer cells that have spread (metastasized) to parts of the body far away from the original. It helps in eliminating cancer cells that are spread to the parts of the body even if they are far away from the place of the original tumor. It is the use of any drug to kill the cancer cells and treat any cancer disease. Chemo can work throughout your whole body unlike other therapies like Surgery and radiation therapy which only remove, kill, or damage cancer cells in a certain area. If you are advised for chemotherapy for treating your cancer by your doctor it is important to understand the goals of treatment when you are making treatment decisions. You need to understand the three main goals for chemotherapy (chemo) in cancer treatment:
Chemotherapy is only recommended by your doctor after the patient undergoes few tests through which the surgeon assesses the growth of a tumor and decides if chemotherapy is required or not. Your doctor will then decide and recommend you what drug or combination of drugs you will get and choose the doses, how the drugs will be given, and how often and how long you’ll get treatment will be also be decided by your doctor. All these decisions depend on the type of cancer, where it is, how big it is, and how it affects your normal body functions and overall health.
There are two types of chemotherapy procedures, called as the normal chemotherapy and adjuvant chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is one the important method that is used as the major treatment in responsive systemic tumors such as lymphoma or for palliation of clinical signs which are not curable by surgery or radiation. Whereas, Adjutant chemotherapy is used in the post-operation stage where almost no cancer is left but there is a risk of recurrence of the same.
Chemotherapy is recommended in some specific cancers that include blood cancer as well as bone marrow cancer, for example, leukemia, lymphoma, and multiple myeloma. For another kind of cancer, specifically breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer or such form of cancer which take place from an organ, chemotherapy is usually administered in addition to surgery and/or radiation.
During the chemotherapy procedure, the patient is given drugs as an infusion into a vein (intravenously). These drugs are given in many different ways, depending on the treatment or ailment for which the procedure is performed. However, very often chemotherapy is given by inserting a tube with a needle into a vein in your arm or into a device in a vein in your chest.
There are certain side effects and complications that are associated with Chemotherapy. Some of the common side effects of Chemotherapy that are seen include rashes, fatigue, hair loss, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sores in the mouth etc. Your doctor will recommend some tests just to assess and understand if the chemotherapy is working well or not. These tests may include X-Rays, CT scan, physical exams, the blood tests (to check if the liver and kidney is in proper condition as there are chances of these getting damaged due to chemotherapy), MRI or (PET) scans. Besides this, your doctor may also give you some kind of injections that will help in boosting the production of red and white blood cells.
If you decide to undergo chemotherapy, it is always a good idea to first know every detail of it and enquire the success rates of chemotherapy in different hospitals based on which you will be able to decide for yourself the hospital in India which will satisfy your requirements. It is also important to see the quality of doctors who will be involved in the process in order to help you with this and know about all the risks and complications involved in the procedure. There are no specific risks associated with Chemotherapy but it is always advisable to take proper care after Chemotherapy.
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