Chemotherapy is a treatment that uses medical drugs to destroy cancer cells. Medical Oncologists prescribe different kinds of drugs alone or in combination to treat different cancers and depending on the extent of cancer. Chemotherapy is considered a "systemic" therapy, meaning that it travels throughout the body, unlike surgery or radiation, which are "local" therapies. Newer forms of chemotherapy are being developed and tested research centers throughout the world. Many of these drugs are based on an understanding of the biological differences between normal cells and cancer cells. These treatments are often referred to as "targeted therapies." The hope is that these treatments will target the cancer cells only and spare normal cells, or at least greatly reduce the side effects of therapy.Post a Query
Cancer cells multiply more rapidly than normal cells and Chemotherapy kills rapidly dividing cells. Cancer cell are also less able to recover from the toxic effects of chemotherapy than can normal cells. Its for this reason that some normal cells that divide fast, such as hair or blood cells also get affected by chemotherapy and this in common side effects like low blood count and hair fall.
Chemotherapy drugs are pre- tested extensively in clinical trials against different types of cancer and multiple drugs are often combined to try and maximize the efficacy against the cancer. Drugs are combined and certain other medicines are also prescribed to make the treatment more tolerable.
A number of Chemotherapy Cycles be given daily, weekly or monthly for different periods of time. Time between cycles allows the body to recover from the ill effects of chemotherapy. The most common way to administer Chemotherapy is Intravenous i.e. injections in the vein (IV), muscle or to the tumor, oral treatment (pills) or directly into a body cavity (i.e.: the bladder, abdominal cavity).
The modality is decided by the Oncologists depending on the type and stage of cancer and the medications to be given.Refer a Patient
Some of the side effects of Chemotherapy are temporary and others can be minimized through medication and management by your doctor. The most significant effects are Hair loss, Nausea, Fatigue, Diarrhoea, Pains in Muscles, Headache, Mouth sores, Disturbed or no Menstrual periods, Decrease in red blood cells and/or white blood cells, Early menopause, Infertility, Weight gain and Urinary incontinence etc. However the modern drugs and other palliatives prescribed these days do alleviate the above symptoms to an extent.Post a Query
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