Diagnosis for Chemotherapy
- Chemotherapy can be used as the primary treatment for cancer.
- Adjuvant Therapy- Chemotherapy can be used after other treatments, such as surgery, to kill any cancer cells that might remain in the body.
- Neo-Adjuvant Therapy- Chemotherapy can given before surgery or radiation to shrink a tumor so that other treatments are possible.
- For Palliation- to relieve symptoms of cancer by killing some of the cancer cells in incurable cases.
- Chemotherapy is often used to prepare for a bone marrow (stem cell) transplant.
- Immune System Disorders- Lower doses of chemotherapy drugs can help control an overactive immune system. Eg : in lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Blood tests and scans are performed to check kidney and liver, heart function to determine whether your body is capable to start chemotherapy.
- Treating any existing infections to reduce the risk of complications during chemotherapy treatment, since some chemotherapy may reduce your body's ability to fight infections.
- The doctor will Advice you to plan for long-term side effects example if your chemotherapy treatment will cause infertility, you may wish to consider your options for preserving your sperm or eggs for future use.
- Important to make arrangements at home and office as it given in the outpatient clinic and you can continue doing usual activities.
Chemotherapy drugs can be given in different ways:
- Chemotherapy infusions- a device is surgically inserted for intravenous chemotherapy- The catheter, port or pump is surgically implanted into a large vein, usually in your chest. Chemotherapy drugs can be given through the device.
- Chemotherapy pills
- Chemotherapy injections
- Chemotherapy creams especially in cases of skin cancer
- Chemotherapy drugs can be given directly to one area of the body. Example intra-peritoneal chemotherapy drugs can be given directly in the abdomen, into the chest cavity (intrapleural chemotherapy) etc.
You may have breaks between treatments so that your body has a chance to build new healthy cells.
After Effects of Chemotherapy
Following are some side effects of chemotherapy drugs:
- Nausea, Vomiting
- Hair loss
- Loss of appetite
- Mouth sores
- Easy bruising
- Kidney problems
- Nerve damage
- Heart problems
Many of the side effects can be prevented or treated. Most side effects subside after treatment ends.
Factors Affecting Cost of Chemotherapy
The cost to the patient depends on a variety of factors like:
- The hospital, the patient chooses
- The cost of chemotherapy depends on the drugs given, stage of cancer, number of cycles and administering type etc.
- Fee for the team of specialists
- Standard test and diagnostic procedures
- Cost of the follow– up care required after chemotherapy