Chemotherapy is a form of cancer treatment that is used for a variety of different types of cancer. It is often used as a main type of treatment in cancer treatment centers because it has been found to be successful for many patients. However, the way in which chemotherapy is used to treat cancer often depends on the type of cancer a patient has and what stage of cancer the patient is in. These are some different ways that chemotherapy is often used to treat cancer in many cancer centers.
To Destroy Cancer Cells
If the cancer is diagnosed early, chemotherapy may be used to destroy the cancer cells and prevent the disease from spreading to other areas of the body. For example, this may be possible for those who have early detection of skin cancer that is only in a small area. If the cells can be destroyed while in the early stages, they are less likely to return or occur in another area of the body.
To Shrink Cancerous Tumors
Chemotherapy may also be used to help make another type of cancer treatment more successful. For instance, if a patient has a cancerous tumor that must be surgically removed, the patient may first be treated with chemotherapy to shrink the tumor to make it easier to remove. This can also help reduce scarring that may occur due to the surgical removal of a tumor because less tissue can be removed if the tumor shrinks.
To Destroy Remaining Cancer Cells
Chemotherapy is also used to kill any remaining cancer cells after other cancer treatments have been performed. To ensure all cancer cells are removed and the disease does not spread to surrounding areas of the body, chemotherapy may be administered after the patient has recovered from surgery. This may be done through outpatient visits to the cancer center, or the patient may be prescribed chemotherapy medication to take orally that kills any remaining cancer cells.
Chemotherapy can be administered in various ways depending on the type of cancer a patient has. It may be given orally as a liquid or pill, given as an injection directly into the veins of the patient, or given as an infusion through an intravenous drip. For those who have skin cancer, some chemotherapy medications are available as creams that are spread on the skin in the area where the cancer cells have been detected.