“As soon as I met the doctors I knew I didn’t want to go anywhere else. I absolutely love the doctors and the care.”
– Nan

Chemotherapy

Your medical oncologist (a doctor who specializes in treating cancer with drugs) will create a personalized treatment plan for you based on national guidelines and his or her expertise and experience. Many different chemotherapy drugs are available and are designed to treat specific cancers. Not all chemotherapy (or “chemo”) is the same, nor is one chemotherapy used to treat all cancers. Depending on the drug(s) your doctor prescribes, you may receive your chemo through an IV (intravenous), in pill form, injectables or a combination. Chemo may be used alone or with other treatments such as radiation therapy or surgery.

Chemotherapy is considered a systemic treatment because the drug travels throughout the body and kills fast growing and dividing cells. It is used to kill cancer cells, relieve pain associated with the tumor or to slow growth of the tumor and extend your life. Many advances have been made in chemotherapy drugs that result in better cure rates and fewer side effects. Some side effects are mild and manageable; others can cause serious complications. Your oncology specialists will explain the risks and benefits of your specific chemotherapy and take every measure to support you through your treatment.

Factors our cancer care team considers when recommending treatment options include:

  • The type and subtype of cancer
  • The stage of the cancer (how far it has spread)
  • Results of other tests on the tumor, such as biomarkers, molecular profiling and genetic testing
  • The patient’s age
  • The patient’s overall health and current medications
  • Other serious health problems (such as heart, liver, or kidney diseases)
  • Types of cancer treatments given in the past

What to expect

If you are going to receive your treatment through an IV (intravenous or IV infusion), you may have a small, outpatient surgery to put a port in so you won’t have to have to have an IV needle inserted into a vein every time you have a treatment. A port is a small metal disk about the size of a quarter that sits just under your skin. The port has a tiny tube that is inserted into a large vessel in your body to administer your treatment and your supportive medications. Your port can be used to receive IV treatments, IV fluids, medications and also to draw your labs. Your healthcare team at the infusion suite will discuss your port with you. The port will stay in until you finish treatments or until your doctor determines you no longer need the port, typically this occurs within six months to one year after the end of your treatment. Not all patients will receive a port and some patients may be encouraged to have a port placed to help maintain the quality of their veins.
When you arrive for infusion, you will come to the infusion suite. The room is designed to be warm and welcoming. We have comfortable recliners, blankets, snacks, and drinks.
Infusions can take as little as a few minutes and up to hours and can continue over the course of a few days. Most patients receive their treatments in 2-4 hours. If your treatment takes days, you will be taking a portable pump home with you. Your doctor and your healthcare team will educate you on the pump and help you to always feel comfortable.
Infusions are given in cycles of active drug treatment followed by a resting period to give healthy tissue time to recover. The resting period may last as long as 2-3 weeks. Once a cycle is completed, it may be repeated a number of times based on your specific diagnosis and national guidelines for treating your cancer.
You will get supportive medications and fluids to help prevent side effects. Side effects from treatment may include fatigue, hair loss, nausea and vomiting, suppressed immune system, and mouth or throat sores. Your healthcare team will discuss these side effects with you, so you know what is expected and what is more urgent. If you ever have any question or concern about what is normal, please call our office. We want to be your partner in this journey to help your healing.

Why Choose Us?

  • Highly trained, collaborative oncology specialists all currently taking new patients
  • Consultation appointments scheduled within 3-5 days of referral and in some cases same-day appointments available
  • One-stop campus for comprehensive diagnositics and treatment for many types of cancer including radiation, chemotherapy infusion, lab draws and imaging services
  • Onsite infusion center offers comfortable, home-like setting
  • In-office lab testing
  • In-office medication dispensary
  • Open, immediate access to outpatient symptom management
  • 24-hour physician coverage
  • COPI-certified clinical trials
  • We accept most insurance plans including Medicare, Medicaid, and VA