Chemotherapy is essentially a method of treatment for cancer with the use of drugs which have the ability to destroy cancer cells. Nowadays many different types of chemotherapies are practiced. Hence your reaction to a chemo treatment may be very different from what others are experiencing.
The uses of chemotherapy include:
Chemotherapy can be used as a stand-alone treatment or combined with other treatments like surgery. It will enhance the positive effects of other treatments like surgery or radiation therapy. Sometimes chemotherapy is also given before a peripheral blood stem cell transplant. It is generally advised that you don’t take any medicine, vitamins or herbs along with the chemotherapy other than the ones prescribed by your doctor because these can interfere with the working of the treatment. Make sure to get all the blood tests prescribed by the doctor done because these help your doctor to take some important decisions.
Chemotherapy can be given using three methods:
Treatments may be given every week, every day or every month because the treatment should be followed by a rest period which allows the body to produce new healthy cells. Before commencing the treatment your doctor will talk to you about your treatment schedule.
It is not possible to predict how a person will feel because each treatment and a person’s reaction to it are different. Some people even feel good enough to continue with their regular schedules at work and at home while others feel tired and worn out. Nowadays it is possible to prevent or control many of the side effects of chemotherapy. Your doctor can help to guide you regarding the best way to do so.
The clinical trials for cancer treatment are meant to find better ways to treat the ailment. If you take part in a clinical trial you can try a new treatment which could be better than the treatment already being given to you. These clinical trials are a viable option for many people suffering from cancer as they are essentially research studies that involve people. You should make the effort to learn about clinical trials for the type of cancer that you have and then decide whether you would like to be part of one.
Almost all patients get these feelings during the course of their cancer treatment with chemotherapy:
It is quite normal to experience a wide range of feelings during chemotherapy because dealing with cancer can be stressful. It is also natural to feel fatigue which makes it harder to deal with your feelings.
The best way to cope with these feelings is to actively do something about them: