Chemotherapy is a cancer treatment in which powerful medications are taken by mouth, injected into a vein or delivered directly into a specific part of the body during surgery. The ultimate goal of the therapy is to destroy cancerous cells and prevent new ones from growing. Chemotherapy drugs accomplish this by attacking cells that multiply at abnormally rapid rates. There are many different medications that can be used for this purpose, and many different cancers that can benefit from this treatment.
At Moffitt Cancer Center, we take an individualized approach to chemotherapy. Our team of expert oncologists will recommend the drug – or combination of drugs – that offers the most promise for each patient’s specific diagnosis, and will tailor the dosages to his or her individual needs (such as height, weight and previous responses to treatment).
Although chemotherapy can halt the growth of cancerous cells, it can also interfere with the growth of other healthy cells that divide rapidly as part of their normal function. For instance, chemotherapy medications might damage the cells that line the mouth or the intestines, or cells that regulate hair growth. When these healthy cells are damaged by chemotherapy, patients may experience side effects such as hair loss, digestive problems or mouth sores. Moffitt’s team of experts can help patients manage any side effects that might arise, including fatigue, nausea or dehydration.
Our outpatient chemotherapy services are provided in three convenient locations:
- The Infusion Center at Moffitt Cancer Center (main campus)
- Moffitt Cancer Center at International Plaza
- Moffitt McKinley Outpatient Center
Blood and platelet transfusions, IV antibiotics, pump disconnections, blood draws and other related services are also available.
Each patient’s treatment team will help determine the appropriate schedule for his or her chemotherapy infusions, and will help schedule appointments at the location that works best for the patient’s needs. Once your appointment is scheduled, you can prepare for your visit by reading more about the patient experience at Moffitt’s Infusion Center.
For more information about chemotherapy and how it can be used as a part of your cancer treatment plan, call 1-888-MOFFITT or complete an online form.