What Is Chemotherapy?
What Is Chemotherapy?
Chemotherapy is used as a systematic treatment procedure for cancer. This involves using two or more anti-cancer drugs. This treatment aims at curing or prolonging life or in treating the symptoms.
When is Chemotherapy recommended?
While recommending you Chemotherapy, your doctor may consider the following factors:
- Type of cancer you are suffering from
- The extent to which the disease has spread
- How severe the condition is
- Other health conditions you are suffering from. This can be a reason that this treatment is chosen carefully in old aged people
Some cases where chemotherapy is frequently advised:
- Before surgery or radiotherapy to shrink the cancer
- After surgery or radiotherapy to stop cancer from recurring
- As a reliable treatment method if the cancer is sensitive enough
- To treat cancer that spreads from a place it started
Some cancers are very responsive to chemotherapy and succumb to it easily. While in others, chemotherapy is not effective and you may be suggested with other treatments like targeted therapy or immunotherapy.
Preparing for Chemotherapy
This treatment can cause a considerable impact on both your physical and emotional health. This gives you a need to prepare on beforehand. You might think of considering the following:
- Make arrangements for healthy eating and finances
Start eating nutritious food. Choose something soft and bland. Also settle your finances prior to the beginning of the treatment and make sure to arrange your payment plans regarding the treatment.
- Take prescribed blood tests
Doctors maintain a baseline record of the patient prior to the treatment. Blood tests will determine the response of your body to chemo.
- Radiologic tests
Radiological imaging tests like X-Ray, MRI, CT, PET, and ultrasound can be used by the doctor during the treatment.
- Make a dental appointment
Get your toothâ€™s health checked. Any signs of infection may get worsened by taking chemotherapy.
- Know about the side effects and prepare yourself for it
Know more about the side effects of the treatment you chose from your doctor. These side effects may include nausea, vomiting, hair loss, infertility, etc.
Understanding the response in Chemotherapy
The drugs used will prevent the cancer cells from growing and dividing(by impairing mitosis). They kill the dividing cells. In the case of a tumor, they stop the growth of new blood cells. The response in chemotherapy can be seen as:
- Decrease in the size of the lump if there is any
- Improvised results in blood tests related to organ functionality
- |CT scan or X-ray showing the measurement of the cancer tumors