Thoracic (Lung Cancer) Oncology
Lung Cancer Treatment - Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy is medication that destroys cancer cells. You can take chemotherapy orally or through the vein, which delivers the medicine or combination of medicines directly into your bloodstream.
Once your team of lung cancer specialists carefully reviews the results of your diagnostic tests, they will recommend whether chemotherapy should be a part of your treatment plan.
How Can Chemotherapy be a Part of My Treatment Plan? What is Involved?
You can receive chemotherapy in any of the following ways:
- By itself, to combat spreading cancer
- Before surgery or radiation to those treatments more effective
- After surgery, to help kill any remaining cancer cells
Your team of Comprehensive Cancer Center specialists will guide you through the entire chemotherapy process. Here’s what you can expect:
- Your team of specialists will determine how many chemotherapy appointments you will need and you will receive all treatments in our clinic.
- Every three weeks, you will visit the clinic so we can meet with you, monitor your condition, and help you manage any side effects.
- During your visit, you may meet with one of our expert oncologists. He or she will discuss your progress and help you make any additional decisions about treatment.
- Over the course of treatment, your team will assess whether you need more tests, including CT, MRI, or PET scans, to monitor and treat your condition.
Your team will advise whether you will have chemotherapy alone, or if it will be a part of treatments that can also include surgery and/or radiation.
What Are the Possible Side Effects of Chemotherapy?
Chemotherapy can have side effects. However, they depend on what drugs you are taking and how much you take. Side effects can include:
- Hair loss
- Loss of appetite
Side effects generally disappear after you complete chemotherapy.
Chemotherapy Clinical Trials at Wake Forest Baptist Health
We offer our patients the opportunity to participate in a variety of new chemotherapy clinical trials. Some clinical trials, particularly for locally advanced cancers, and for cancers that have spread to other parts of the body, involve novel combinations of chemotherapy and radiation techniques.
Your Cancer Center team will advise you if there is a chemotherapy clinical trial appropriate for you. See our clinical trials.