Cancer

Top 9 FAQs of Chemotherapy

April 19th, 2018
Top 9 FAQs of Chemotherapy
Q1. What is Chemotherapy?
 
In laymen’s terms, chemotherapy is a process to destroy the cancer cells through the use of chemicals. This therapy is considered one of the most effective treatments for cancer. It basically hampers the growth of the cancer cells.
 
Q2. How does chemotherapy works?
 
To understand chemotherapy’s working, one must understand the essence of cancer itself. The essence of cancer is uncontrollable cell reproduction. Once the cell reproduction reaches an alarming stage, it starts to replace the space occupied by the healthy and useful cells. Now, when the growth is uncontrollable, you need a contingency plan that allows you to hamper this growth. This is the purpose of chemotherapy; the drugs included in this therapy target specific sites of the body and interfere with the growth of cancer cells. 
 
Q3. What is the actual job of chemotherapy?
 
Their job is dependent on their ability to perform the following tasks
  • Prevention of cell division to put a stopping point to the cell growth
  • Cancer cells grow by eating; chemotherapy can target the food source and starve them out. 
  • They can induce Apoptosis, which is basically suicide of the cancer cells
  • Blood vessels that supply the tumor cells can be stopped. 
Q4. How to prepare for chemotherapy? 
 
While chemotherapy doesn’t interfere with the daily life of any individual, it is necessary to have a head start when it comes to a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, in order to prepare for chemotherapy, you must be ready to do the following: 
  • Make sure that you have ample time to rest to make sure that your body isn’t strained after the chemo. 
  • Eat healthy foods such as room temperature potatoes, cereals etc. 
  • Chemo tends to be a process where cleanliness of the body is important. Therefore, it is necessary for you to avoid any sort of germs at all times. 
Q5. How long does chemotherapy last? 
 
Chemotherapy tends to be given in terms of the cycle where each cycle can last from one to more days. Now, depending upon the intensity of a tumor, cancer can last for several cycles at a time. However, ideally, the treatment is over in 4 to six cycles. 
 
Q6. How much does this therapy costs? 
 
The cost of chemo varies from drug to drug. The most standard FEC has the cost of around INR 8000 to 10000. However, if the nature of cancer is intense, a stronger drug may be needed to be applied. This happens in the scenario where the tests for this disease have come positive in nodes and therefore, the cost is much more. 
 
Q7.  Are there any disadvantages of chemotherapy?
 
As much as chemotherapy is helpful when it comes to halting the progress of cancer cells, there are some risks involved in the form of late side effects, resistance to the chemicals. Generally, it involves the risks that any molecular treatment might involve. 
 
Q8. Are there any side effects of chemotherapy? 
 
Some of the common side effects of chemotherapy are as follows: 
  • Hair loss
  • Lethargy
  • Low skin integrity(you can bruise easily)
  • General weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Changes in appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Backed up stomach
  • Sores in mouth, throat and other places
  • Trouble with swallowing
  • Changes in weight
  • Kidney issues
  • Mood changes
  • Changes in sexual functions
  • Issues with fertility
Q9. At what point should I start worrying about the side effects? 
 
While some of the side effects of chemo are pretty common and damn near expected, you need to be in touch with the doctor in any of the following issues become intense.
  • Sudden chills through the body
  • Feverish disposition
  • Allergic reaction
  • Bloody stool
  • Shortness while breathing
  • Intense headaches that cannot be stopped using medication.

Read More posts about Cancer: - How Many Types of Cancers are There In our Body?

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