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Your gateway to information on chemotherapy for breast cancer

Chemotherapy for breast cancer

Chemotherapy for breast cancer:

Chemotherapy for breast cancer   

       Your breast cancer surgeon has hopefully removed all the cancer from your body, however this cannot be taken for granted. Depending on some of the factors that will be discussed below, you may need additional chemotherapy and or radiation therapy to increase your odds of defeating the cancer. Chemotherapy drugs are active against cancer cells that may have been left behind after surgery or against cancer cells that may have spread to other organs. These drugs are usually given intravenously but some of them can be taken in a pill form. The chemotherapy drugs travel through the bloodstream to reach cancer cells in most parts of the body. When used in an adjuvant setting, (for patients who had surgery to remove the tumor), chemotherapy can significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer from coming back. Usually the chemotherapy is given on fixed schedules known as cycles. The most common treatment cycle is one-day treatment in every three weeks, but there are some regimens in which once in four weeks and once in two weeks and weekly treatments are used. This involves one-day treatment followed by a recovery period through which you will recover from the bad effects of the chemotherapy. The cancer cells are more vulnerable to chemotherapy drugs than the normal cells. During the rest period your normal cells recover from the bad effects of chemotherapy. Since the cancer cells are not efficient in repairing their injuries, they perish. Depending on the stage and lymph node status you may receive a total of four to eight cycles of treatment. This would translate in to about three to six months of treatment with chemotherapy. Chemotherapy may be followed by radiation therapy if your initial choice of surgery was lumpectomy. Patients who had mastectomy may also have to undergo radiation therapy if the number of involved lymph nodes exceeds three. If the cancer has spread from the breast to other organs like bone, liver, or lungs, the patient is said to have stage IV breast cancer or metastatic breast cancer.   Chemotherapy options for metastatic breast cancer
      Chemotherapy and hormonal therapy are the main treatment options for metastatic breast cancer. Radiation therapy is not generally offered to patients with metastatic breast cancer. Radiation therapy is a local treatment, which is effective only.... Chemotherapy drugs used in breast cancer
          Commonly used drugs in breast cancer treatment include doxorubicin, cyclophoshamide....

Chemotherapy combinations in breast cancer
      The most commoly used chemotherapy regimens in breast cancer includes combination of Doxorubicin, Cyclophosphamided (AC), combination of Doxorubicin, Cyclophosphamide and 5-FU....

What is the right chemotherapy for you?
      AC and CMF are the most commonly used combinations for the adjuvant treatment of breast cancer. If the patient is node positive, the physician may give four cycles of AC followed by four more cycles of treatment with paclitaxel. Metastatic breast cancer patients may receive any of the combination therapy mentioned above....

Side effects from chemotherapy
     Chemotherapy drugs are designed to attack and kill the fast growing cancer cells, hence it is not surprising to note that these drugs are associated with significant side effects. The side effects of chemotherapy depend on the type of drugs, dose of the chemotherapy, and the length of treatment. Patient may get temporary side effects, which might include....

Chemotherapy for breast cancer

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