Chemotherapy is a commonly advised therapy for people suffering from cancer disease. The types of medications that are administered during chemotherapy depend on an individual’s situation suffering from cancer. Chemotherapy is a customized treatment option for each cancer patient where the treatment is modified in such a way that it helps in relieving the symptoms and stops the progression of the disease. The goals for chemotherapy are different ranging from curing cancer completely, controlling the growth rate and spread of the disease and preventing the patient against discomfort. Chemotherapy has different effects on each patient but the most common adverse effect seen in patients is fatigue. But the patients might also suffer from severe complications depending on the condition. So how does chemotherapy works?
Chemotherapy works through slowing down the growth of the cancerous cells or completely stops the growth of cells preventing its immediate division and growth. The chemotherapy can harm the unhealthy or healthy cells which divide rapidly like cells present in the lining of the mouth, stomach or intestines. The damaging effect on the healthy cells can result in side effects that might get over once the chemotherapy is terminated.
The chemotherapy works by circulating all over the body within the bloodstream. It treats the cancerous cells in various parts of the body which is why it is termed as systemic treatment. Chemotherapy kills the cells by splitting them into two. The body tissues have billions of cells that don’t divide much once we are grown to our fullest. Normally the cells divide into two and they keep on multiplying at a slower pace but in cancerous conditions, the cells keep on dividing till the time there is a mass of cells. These cells then form a lump which is termed as a tumor. The cancer cells divide more rapidly due to which the chemotherapy targets them and kills them more effectively. Some chemotherapeutic drugs kill the cells by damaging the control center of the cell i.e. nucleus. Other drugs prevent the cell division by interrupting the chemical process which promotes cell division. The genes are present in the nucleus which helps in the division of cells. The chemotherapy drugs kill the genes within the nucleus and prevent the damage. Some drugs kill the cells when they are splitting while others kill the cells when they are replicating the genes before splitting. Chemotherapy commonly kills the extremely active cells rather than the ones which are at rest and act normal. Certain healthcare professionals prescribe a combination of drugs which helps in killing the cells at various stages of cell division which means they can kill an increased number of cancerous cells.
Chemotherapy works depending on the advanced stage of cancer or cancerous types. It can help to cure cancer where it destroys the malignant cells to the point the doctor is unable to detect any cancerous cells within the body. The chemotherapy can prevent cancer to spread, slow down the growth and destroy the cancerous cells which can spread to different body parts. The chemotherapy aids in shrinking the tumors where it helps in relieving the symptoms. Chemotherapy is sometimes chosen as the only treatment option whereas often it is used in combination with radiation, surgery and biological therapy. Chemotherapy is either given in the form of injections, intra-arterial, intraperitoneal, intravenous, orally or topically. The healthcare professionals can advise you with the best chemotherapy depending on the condition, severity and whether you have a past medical history.
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