Chemotherapy uses anti-cancer (cytotoxic) drugs to destroy cancer cells. Cytotoxic drugs have a toxic effect - the growth and division of abnormal cells and, unfortunately, some effect on certain cells of the body healthy.
Chemotherapy for brain tumors in Assuta may appoint:
- with radiation therapy or alone, for the treatment of high grade gliomas and CNS lymphoma;
- if a brain tumor recurred after surgery and irradiation;
- after surgery instead of radiation therapy if subferialnaya glioma was not completely removed.
The Assuta hospital during chemotherapy guided by the world medical treatment protocols. Using new drugs and regimens. For each case an individual approach, has a team of highly skilled professionals with the patient. Guaranteed high quality treatment and organization of care in a short time. If you need assistance, please contact through the inquiry form.
Despite the presence of certain side effects, the benefits of chemotherapy for brain tumors outweigh the risks. In addition, there are various methods and drugs that can reduce or prevent undesirable consequences.
chemotherapy drugs in brain tumors in Assuta
There are many different cytostatic drugs, but not all of them can be used to treat brain tumors. Doctors prescribe drugs that are able to go through the natural protection of the brain, the so-called blood-brain barrier.
The major drugs used in the treatment of brain tumors , are:
- temozolomide (temodal®);
- lomustine, vincristine, procarbazine appointed either alone or in combination;
There are various ways of chemotherapy for brain tumors . Preparations temozolomide, procarbazine lomustine and taken in pill form. Vincristine carmustine and are liquids that are administered intravenously.
For intravenous chemotherapy is carried out one or more treatment sessions. Followed by a period of rest for several weeks. All this is called a cycle of therapy, the duration of which depends on the drugs. Most cycles of 4-6 weeks.
If diagnosed with high grade glioma may designate temozolomide and radiation therapy complex. This combination treatment. Daily temozolid taken during the course of radiation therapy, which usually lasts for six weeks.
Combined treatment causes more side effects, so you need a fairly good physical condition. There is a risk of respiratory tract infections. To reduce the probability of thrombosis, the doctor prescribes antibiotics.
After completion of chemoradiotherapy followed by a break. Then take temozolomide for five days every four weeks for six cycles.
Placing a chemotherapeutic implant
Chemotherapy drugs can be administered directly into the brain. The surgeon places the implant under the name Gliadel®, it contains a cytostatic agent carmustine. This procedure is recommended for patients with newly diagnosed high grade gliomas and for relapsed glioblastoma.
Gliadel implants are small plates or disks about the size of a coin. They dissolve after they are placed in the brain. During surgery to remove a brain tumor, the surgeon puts up to eight implants. They are placed in the area where the tumor was removed. Implants dissolve slowly in two to three weeks, gradually releasing carmustine in brain tissue. It may also be prescribed a course of radiotherapy.
Possible side effects of the implant
Drugs chemotherapy for brain tumors can cause some side effects, implant placement can increase the risk of complications after surgery. Certain undesirable effects may be caused by a tumor or surgery (craniotomy).
It is important to inform your doctor about any new symptoms or the worsening of existing symptoms:
- convulsions (seizures);
- weakness in the arms or legs;
- problems with speech;
- confusion or disorientation;
- vision problems;
- slow healing of wounds;
- urinary tract infection.
A very small amount of carmustine gets into the bloodstream. This may reduce the number of white blood cells, which increase the likelihood of infection. 10 days after placement of the implant to give blood tests to check white blood cell counts.
The risk of thrombosis
Cancer increases the probability of thrombosis, and chemotherapy can strengthen it. The clot can cause symptoms such as pain, redness and swelling in the leg, shortness of breath and chest pain. For treatment are appointed by the blood thinners.
Certain medicines may interact with chemotherapy or harm during treatment. This includes tools that you can buy at a pharmacy - over the counter medications, herbal medications. It is important to report any funds that are received.
Chemotherapy for brain tumors can affect fertility (ability to conception). Before treatment is necessary to discuss this issue, if he bothers.
It is important to use contraception during and for several months after the chemotherapy of brain tumors . This is due to the fact that drugs can harm the developing baby.
This type of treatment in some cases, the ovaries can stop working. Disrupted regular menstrual cycle. Sometimes these failures - the time, in other cases they may become permanent.
Common adverse effects of chemotherapy in brain tumors
- Nausea and vomiting are more combinations of cytotoxic drugs cause. Special drugs are used to reduce the side effects.
- Hair loss is a special negative consequence of treatment, the degree and the duration of which is unpredictable due to the type and dose of drugs, personal characteristics.
- Bone marrow suppression, which reduces the amount of one or more types of blood cells, causes the development of leukopenia and neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, anemia. When this serious side effect correction dose chemotherapy for brain tumors or temporarily stopped.
- Inflammation in the oral cavity can be triggered by the action of chemotherapeutic agents, often at elevated doses. It requires regular and careful maintenance in order to reduce inflammation and prevent infection. Doctors are instructed in detail, if necessary, prescribe painkillers.
- Loss of appetite may be due to many factors - gastrointestinal disorders, the accumulation of toxins due to the death of abnormal cells in the body, changes in taste and smell.
- Diarrhea frequently occurs under the action of cytostatic agents, like constipation. The reason for the latter may be drugs vinblastine and vincristine; drugs to facilitate nausea and vomiting; reducing the amount of water intake.
- Fatigue accompanies chemotherapy treatment process. Among the reasons for its development include poor appetite, depression, anemia, specific drugs.
- Some cytotoxic agents cause peripheral nerve damage that causes symptoms such as tingling, numbness, changes in reflexes, muscle weakness. This side effect is related to the type and dose of medicine, it is often provoke platinum compounds and taxanes.
- Ototoxicity, or hearing loss can cause such cytostatic agents like cisplatin, carboplatin, or ifosfamide. Enhances the effect of the combination with brain irradiation. These procedures can damage the tiny hair cells in the ear that are responsible for processing sound waves. Also, circulation may be damaged inner ear. Hearing loss typically occurs in the high frequency range and is dependent on the dose of chemotherapy. This is an irreversible effect and a long-term problem.
- This type of drugs can inflict damage to the kidneys. In the decay products are cytostatic agents that damage cells kidneys, ureters and bladder. The process due amount and type of medication. Symptoms include headache, weakness, increased blood pressure, decreased urination and swelling in hands, feet or other parts of the body. Severe damage can lead to kidney failure.
- Allergic reactions are often observed by intravenous administration of drugs.