Understanding Chemotherapy’s Role in the Fight Against Cancer

 Understanding Chemotherapy’s Role in the Fight Against Cancer

Cancer is a disease in which some cells of the body start to behave abnormally. These cancer cells grow and multiply at an uncontrollable pace, invade the normal tissues, and eventually spread across your body. Chemotherapy is the procedure of destroying cancer cells with the use of drugs. The best cancer hospital in India uses chemotherapy as a treatment to fight the spread of cancer. 

How Chemotherapy works

There are more than 100 chemotherapy drugs – each specializing in treating different kinds of cancer. Usually, the medications used during the procedure stop cancer cells from growing, dividing, and multiplying. In addition, they can shrink tumorous cells pre-surgery, and are even used for cancers like Leukemia.

Most normal cells do not divide or grow at an exponential pace. However, since cancer cells divide and grow much faster, they are likely to be the most impacted by a successful chemotherapy session. 

Who gets Chemotherapy? 

Chemotherapy is used in the best cancer hospital in India as a treatment for a variety of cancers in different stages. Chemotherapy is a common procedure to: 

Cure Cancer

Chemotherapy is known to be a credible method to cure cancer and decrease the likelihood of a relapse.

Stop the spread of cancer and ease painful symptoms

In advanced stages of the disease, chemotherapy is used to ease symptoms such as uneasiness and pain by shrinking the cancerous growth.

An Oncologist determines whether a patient needs Chemotherapy based on the spread of cancer. Chemotherapy is often clubbed with other cancer treatments to maximize its impact. These decisions are made based on multiple factors, namely:

– The type of cancer that a patient has

– The extent of spread of the cancer

– The age of the patient

– Whether the patient has any pre-existing conditions or any other ailments 

Methods of receiving Chemotherapy 

Chemotherapy can be administered in multiple forms. Below listed are some of the more usual formats:

Oral chemotherapy

These medicines can be swallowed and come in various forms – pills, liquid, capsules, tablets, etc. The dosage will vary as per the prescribed therapy plan.

Intravenous chemotherapy 

These drugs are injected directly into the patient’s vein. Individual sessions of therapy can take a few minutes to a couple of hours. 

Muscular injection

This drug is given as a muscular shot or is injected under a cancer patient’s skin. It can be injected into the arm, abdomen, or leg. 

Intra-arterial chemotherapy

Some chemotherapy drugs are injected into the arteries of a patient. This method is also known as IA chemotherapy. 

The health care team in the best cancer hospital in India offers an integrated treatment plan. The doctors involved in the treatment may administer chemotherapy on-site, at the hospital, or prescribe oral medications taken at home based on the treatment plan.  

Duration of the treatment

The duration of the treatment varies depending on multiple factors, such as: 

– Type & Stage of cancer

– Purpose of chemotherapy – whether the subject is receiving chemotherapy as means to cure cancer, control its growth, or ease the associated symptoms

– The patient’s bodily response to the treatment

– Method of receiving chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is often administered in a phased manner. For example, there may be a phase where a phase of rest follows a chemotherapy phase. This resting phase is prescribed to let the body have time to recover and generate healthy cells.

Use of Chemotherapy with other cancer treatments

Many of the best cancer hospitals in India use chemotherapy as part of cancer treatment programs along with other procedures. 

Neoadjuvant chemotherapy

In case of larger tumors that require surgery, chemotherapy is used to reduce the cancerous cell. This decreases risk and increases the likelihood of a successful surgery. 

Adjuvant chemotherapy 

Sometimes Chemotherapy is used post a successful cancer surgery to destroy any remaining cancer cells. 

Chemotherapy works well with other treatments and reduces the spread of cancer by killing cancer cells.  

Side Effects of Chemotherapy 

Chemotherapy impacts every patient differently and this impact is dependent on multiple factors, such as:

  1. The type of cancer
  2. The stage of cancer
  3. The type of chemotherapy that the patient is receiving
  4. The dose of chemotherapy
  5. The patient’s overall health and age

It is difficult to determine how each cycle of chemotherapy will impact a patient. However, since chemotherapy drugs kill dividing cells (cancerous or not), it affects the body tissues where cells grow and constantly divide, such as:

– Hair 

– Bone marrow

– Skin

– Lining of the digestive system

The damage to these cells is usually temporary since new cells replace them. Therefore, most of the side effects disappear once the treatment is completed. The known side effects during the therapy are diarrhea, nausea, mouth sores, and fatigue.  

A few of the best cancer hospitals in India are equipped with the latest technology for treating even complex cancers in the most non-invasive manner. Cancer treatment with chemotherapy has a fast recovery rate and has become one of the most efficient ways of managing cancer.

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