Chemo in Treatment of Prostate Cancer
How It's Administered
- Chemotherapy for prostate cancer is administered intravenously, allowing the medication to have direct access to the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream the chemotherapy not only targets cancer cells in the prostate, but also any other cancer cells that may have spread to other parts of the body.
When It's Administered
- Chemotherapy is reserved as a treatment option only when the prostate cancer has not responded to hormone therapy, or has began to spread (metastasize) to other areas of the body. It may also be given if the prostate cancer returns after a period of remission.
How It Works
- Chemotherapy works by targeting accelerated cell growth in the body. Since cancer cells multiply at a faster rate than other cells in your body, the chemotherapy medication recognizes them and disables their ability to grow and spread. This usually kills the cancer cell in the process.
- Chemotherapy comes with a host of serious side effects which must be weighed against the benefits of undergoing the treatment. Side effects of chemotherapy may include hair loss, nausea, diarrhea, appetite loss and, in serious rare cases, infertility.
- It may take multiple treatments for chemotherapy to take full effect, and small breaks are taken between treatments to allow the body to heal. Chemotherapy is not a guaranteed cure, and prostate cancer may still take a patient's life.