According to the American Cancer Society, more than 100 chemotherapy or chemo drugs are used to treat cancer, either alone or in combination with other drugs or treatments.
These drugs are very different in their chemical composition, how they are taken, their usefulness in treating specific forms of cancer, and their side effects.
Chemotherapy drugs target cells at different phases of the process of forming new cells, called the cell cycle. Unlike radiation or surgery, which target specific areas, chemo can work throughout your body. However, chemo drugs can’t tell the difference between healthy cells and cancer cells. This means normal cells are damaged along with the cancer cells like those of the skin, hair, intestines, and bone marrow. That’s what causes some of the side effects of the treatment. Each time chemo is given, it means trying to find a balance between killing the cancer cells (in order to cure or control the disease) and sparing the normal cells (to lessen side effects).
Understanding how these drugs work helps doctors predict which drugs are likely to work well together. Doctors can also plan how often doses of each drug should be given based on the timing of the cell phases.
The Instituto de Oncología Intervencionista (Interventionist Oncology Institute) services include standard and compassionate treatments that can improve a patient's survival, quality of life, reducing cancer symptoms, while minimizing drug side effects.
IDOI MEXICO selects certain medications according to the type of cancer and the stage of the disease.