One of the most common treatments in private oncology, chemotherapy is a very common part of cancer treatment, used as a first-line treatment to cure cancer completely, as part of other treatments, to reduce the risk of cancer coming back or to help relieve symptoms.
Whilst the exact type of treatment can vary, chemotherapy is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells or slow their progression by stopping them from reproducing, which is one of the most effective ways of stopping cancer, albeit one with a range of side effects.
Before you undergo chemotherapy treatment, here is what you need to know.
Not All Chemotherapy Drugs Cause Hair Loss
One of the most common side effects people think of when it comes to chemotherapy is the loss of hair, but whilst this can happen with certain combinations of drugs, it is not always the case that you will get the same side effects as someone else going through chemotherapy.
The reason for the sometimes severe side effects is that chemotherapy targets both healthy can cancerous cells alike as they often cannot tell the difference.
If you have any questions, speaking to your doctor is essential.
It Is Best Not To Go Alone
As everyone’s chemotherapy journey is different, it may be best to have someone with you during the session, such as a friend, loved one or family member, who can help provide emotional and practical support.
The latter can take the form of driving you to the appointment, taking you back, making notes and helping take you back to the car if you feel unwell.
They can also help pass the time and keep your spirits high.
Drink A Lot Of Water
Immediately after a chemotherapy infusion, you may start to feel particularly dehydrated, but even if you do not, you are likely to need a lot of water outside of specific cases such as heart failure or kidney disease.
Typically you need at least 250ml every hour from when you have your treatment until you go to sleep that day.