Types of breast cancer chemotherapy
Our medical oncologists track the latest in breast cancer chemotherapy treatments so you get the most advanced therapy possible. There are a few terms to understand about types of chemotherapy:
- Adjuvant chemotherapy: We administer this treatment along with breast cancer surgery to reduce the risk of breast cancer returning.
- Extended adjuvant chemotherapy: This treatment can continue 10 or 15 years after surgery, rather than the more typical five years. In some cases, the long-term health benefits of extended chemotherapy treatment may outweigh the risks.
- Neoadjuvant chemotherapy: This treatment takes place before breast cancer surgery to shrink the tumor and preserve as much healthy breast tissue as possible.
What to expect during chemotherapy
Every cancer responds differently to treatment. But chemotherapy causes the cancer to disappear or shrink in 30 to 60 percent of patients with advanced breast cancer.
Your breast cancer chemotherapy regimen may require an outpatient infusion treatment at the hospital, or it may allow you to simply take a pill at home.
Chemotherapy may cause you to feel tired or suffer from chemo brain (mental fogginess or difficulty focusing). You also will be more susceptible to infection after chemotherapy treatment. Your doctor can help you manage these or other symptoms you may experience.
Breast cancer clinical trials
Researchers are always investigating new breast cancer chemotherapy treatments. Our breast cancer patients at times have access to clinical trials for these new treatments. Ask your cancer team whether a clinical trial might be right for you.