Medical Oncology

Medical Oncology

AOI’s medical oncology team includes extremely proficient doctors with expertise in the latest techniques in chemotherapy. They use the latest medical evidence to create specific treatment regimens based on every patient’s unique needs. We determine the right treatment plan for each individual based on various factors as stage of cancer, extent of the damage, other medical conditions, and location within the body. These treatment plans contain any combination of the following: Chemotherapy, Radiation Therapy and Surgery.

Medical Oncology is the use of specialized medications, referred to as chemotherapy drugs, to control and eradicate cancerous cells throughout a patients body. A medical oncologist is the physician responsible for the management and oversight of a patients Chemotherapy regimen, and the complications which may be given over the course of several weeks, months, or years.

Chemotherapy

chemo-final

Chemotherapy, also referred to as Chemo, is a form of cancer treatment in which drugs are used to kill cancer cells, stop cancer cells from spreading and slow the growth of cancer cells.
Chemotherapy can be given alone or in conjunction with other treatments. Chemotherapy that is given before surgery or radiation therapy in order to reduce the size of a tumor is known as neo-adjuvant Chemotherapy. In turn, adjuvant chemotherapy is given to patients after radiation treatment or surgery.

Chemotherapy is generally administered over several treatment cycles. Depending on the doctors prescription and how the patients body reacts, Chemotherapy can be delivered daily, weekly, or monthly followed by a period of rest. This period of rest is vital to continuing chemotherapy because it allows the body to recover and rejuvenate to produce healthy new cells.

Chemotherapy is typically administered in the following ways:

  • Intravenous (IV): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the vein.
  • Injection (Intramuscular – IM): The chemotherapy is administered by an injection into the muscle.
  • Oral: The chemotherapy is in pill, capsule or liquid form that is swallowed.
  • Intra-arterial (IA): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the artery.
  • Intra-peritoneal (IP): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the peritoneal cavity which contains organs such as the stomach, intestines, and liver.

Topical: The chemotherapy is in a cream form that is rubbed onto the skin.

Although chemotherapy is a rigorous treatment option for patients, the overall clinical outcomes
can outweigh the associated side effects. Since cancer cells can rapidly evolve, it is important to target the malignant cells with chemotherapy in hopes of controlling, reducing, and preventing cell division. Chemotherapy can prevent cancer cells from metastasizing, a term used to describe the spread of cancer cells from their origin to other regions of the body.

  • Depending upon the type of cancer and stage of cancer, chemotherapy can be used for curative purposes. A patient is considered cured when all of the cancer cells within the body have been eradicated and the cancer does not return for many years.
  • Also, medical oncologists often use chemotherapy in conjunction with radiation therapy and surgery. Because chemotherapy is systemic, meaning it can affect the entire body, it can kill off cancerous cells which radiation or surgery cannot address. Therefore, chemotherapy makes these other treatment options more effective in eliminating cancer when combined.
  • Additionally, chemotherapy drugs may be used to shrink an existing tumor, helping the patient by alleviating pain or pressure associated with that tumor.  Although shrinking that tumor does not cure the cancer, it can improve and even extend the life of the patient.

As Chemotherapy targets cells that divide quickly, they sometimes harm healthy cells in the mouth and intestines or cells that help your hair to grow. Side effects may occur when healthy cells are damaged. However, once the treatment is complete, these side effects tend to fade away.

How is Chemotherapy Administered

Chemotherapy is generally administered over several treatment cycles. Depending on the doctors prescription and how the patients body reacts, Chemotherapy can be delivered daily, weekly, or monthly followed by a period of rest. This period of rest is vital to continuing chemotherapy because it allows the body to recover and rejuvenate to produce healthy new cells.

Chemotherapy is typically administered in the following ways:

  • Intravenous (IV): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the vein.
  • Injection (Intramuscular – IM): The chemotherapy is administered by an injection into the muscle.
  • Oral: The chemotherapy is in pill, capsule or liquid form that is swallowed.
  • Intra-arterial (IA): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the artery.
  • Intra-peritoneal (IP): The chemotherapy is administered directly into the peritoneal cavity which contains organs such as the stomach, intestines, and liver.
  • Topical: The chemotherapy is in a cream form that is rubbed onto the skin.

Benefits of Chemotherapy

Although chemotherapy is a rigorous treatment option for patients, the overall clinical outcomes can outweigh the associated side effects. Since cancer cells can rapidly evolve, it is important to target the malignant cells with chemotherapy in hopes of controlling, reducing, and preventing cell division. Chemotherapy can prevent cancer cells from metastasizing, a term used to describe the spread of cancer cells from their origin to other regions of the body.

Depending upon the type of cancer and stage of cancer, chemotherapy can be used for curative purposes. A patient is considered cured when all of the cancer cells within the body have been eradicated and the cancer does not return for many years.

Also, medical oncologists often use chemotherapy in conjunction with radiation therapy and surgery. Because chemotherapy is systemic, meaning it can affect the entire body, it can kill off cancerous cells which radiation or surgery cannot address. Therefore, chemotherapy makes these other treatment options more effective in eliminating cancer when combined.

Additionally, chemotherapy drugs may be used to shrink an existing tumor, helping the patient by alleviating pain or pressure associated with that tumor.  Although shrinking that tumor does not cure the cancer, it can improve and even extend the life of the patient.

Side-effects of Chemotherapy

As Chemotherapy targets cells that divide quickly, they sometimes harm healthy cells in the mouth and intestines or cells that help your hair to grow. Side effects may occur when healthy cells are damaged. However, once the treatment is complete, these side effects tend to fade away.

Precision Cancer Care at American Oncology Institute

In recent years, cancer treatment and therapies have progressed significantly. Countless patients have been cured, while others lives have been extended far longer than possible with these advanced treatment options.

American Oncology Institute provides comprehensive cancer management powered by a multi-disciplinary team, clinical excellence, world class technology as well as international protocols. AOI stands at the forefront of treatment excellence offering precision cancer care for all types of cancers for all age groups and genders.