Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy and How Does It Work?

Chemotherapy is a powerful drug therapy that destroys fast-growing cells in the body. It is mostly used to treat cancer. As compared to normal cells in the body, cancer cells tend to grow and multiply rapidly in an uncontrolled manner. Chemotherapy drugs attack the cancer cells to stop them from growing and multiplying.

These drugs can either be used individually or in combination with other therapies like surgery, hormone therapy, or chemo and radiation together. Platinum-based chemotherapy is an example of an individualized cancer treatment.

Chemotherapy and How Does It Work

At What Stage of Cancer Is Chemotherapy Used?

In medical oncology services, chemotherapy can be used in various settings, depending on the type of cancer and its stage.

  • Before surgery – chemotherapy may be used to shrink a tumor before surgery or radiotherapy. This is also known as induction chemotherapy.
  • After surgery – chemotherapy can be used after the surgery, to eliminate any cancer cells that may be remaining in the body.
  • To relieve pain and other symptoms – this type of therapy is known as Palliative Chemotherapy. It can be used at any stage, to relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life.
At What Stage of Cancer Is Chemotherapy Used

How Effective Is Chemotherapy?

Chemotherapy has proven to be effective in treating several types of cancer. However, it can cause numerous side effects. The most common side effects are mild in nature and may subside once the treatment is over. Common side effects of chemotherapy include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Hair loss
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Weight loss
  • Insomnia
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Bruising
  • Bleeding
  • Mouth Sores
  • Pain
How Effective Is Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy may have certain long-lasting side effects:

  • Heart disease
  • Chemotherapy induced peripheral neuropathy, or nerve damage
  • Kidney disease
  • Possibility of developing a second cancer
  • Infertility
  • Lung disease

Please consult with a provider to see if chemotherapy is the right option for your treatment plan.

How to Prepare for Chemotherapy?

Our infusion centers and medical centers are staffed by highly skilled oncology physicians and nurses to prepare you for your chemotherapy treatment. Consider the following:

  • Make arrangements at work and home. Mostly, people are able to continue with their daily activities during chemo. However, your doctor will tell you about the side effects to expect, and whether you need to lighten your workload or have someone around the house to help with chores.
  • Undergo a few tests to make sure your body is ready to begin chemotherapy. Get blood tests and heart tests done to check the functioning of your kidney, liver, and heart. Visit your dentist to check your teeth and look for any signs of infection.
  • Prepare for side effects. Your doctor will guide you about what side effects to expect, so that you can make prior plans and arrangements to deal with them.
How to Prepare for Chemotherapy

How much does chemotherapy cost?

The cost of chemotherapy will depend on your insurance plan’s coverage. Because of variations in coverage, we suggest you contact your insurance carrier or employer to verify specific coverage. You may also contact our offices to verify accepted plans.

How much does chemotherapy cost

Can you get chemotherapy at home?

Chemotherapy treatment is typically administered in a clinic or a hospital. However, there are some at-home treatment options like capsules, pills, tablets, liquids, or topical treatments.

Need assistance with chemotherapy? Contact us to book an appointment with the best oncology and hematology service provider in Maryland.

Can you get chemotherapy at home