What do chemotherapy and radiation have in common?

How does chemo and radiation work together?

In the treatment called chemo-radiation, you will get both chemotherapy and radiation at the same time. Chemotherapy weakens the cancer cells which helps radiation to work better.

Why is chemotherapy and radiotherapy used together?

Chemotherapy uses anti-cancer (cytotoxic) drugs to destroy cancer cells. Radiotherapy uses high-energy rays to destroy cancer cells. The chemotherapy drugs can make cancer cells more sensitive to radiotherapy. Combining both treatments is often more effective than having either treatment on its own.

What differences exist between chemotherapy and radiation treatment?

While chemotherapy delivers drugs to the entire body, radiation aims to only target the specific area of the body where there are cancerous cells, and aims to reduce the number of healthy cells that are affected during treatment.

Which is worse on the body chemo or radiation?

Since radiation therapy is focused on one area of your body, you may experience fewer side effects than with chemotherapy. However, it may still affect healthy cells in your body.

Which comes first radiation or chemo?

Giving Chemo and Radiation Therapy at Same Time Offers Same Benefits as Sequential Timing. If early-stage breast cancer is going to be treated with both chemotherapy and external beam radiation therapy, chemotherapy usually is given first. Radiation generally starts after chemotherapy is done.

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How long does it take to recover from radiation and chemo?

The rule of thumb I usually tell my patients is that it takes about two months of recovery time for every one month of treatment before energy will return to a baseline. Everyone is different but at least this gives you a ballpark. This is a lot longer than most people assume.

What happens if I refuse radiation treatment?

Patients who refuse recommended adjuvant radiation therapy have unacceptably high rates of local recurrence. Omission of radiation for advanced age alone is associated with local recurrence rates comparable to those for younger patients.

What does radiation do that chemo doesn t?

Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are both treatments for cancer – the uncontrolled growth and spread of cells to surrounding tissues. Chemotherapy, or “chemo,” uses special drugs to shrink or kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy, or “radiation,” kills these cells with high-energy beams such as X-rays or protons.

How long does it take radiation to shrink a tumor?

For tumors that divide slowly, the mass may shrink over a long, extended period after radiation stops. The median time for a prostate cancer to shrink is about 18 months (some quicker, some slower).