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    Colorectal Cancer - Medications

    Chemotherapy is the use of medicines to control the cancer's growth or relieve symptoms. Often the medicines are given through a needle in your vein. Your blood vessels carry the medicines through your body. Sometimes the medicines are available as pills. And sometimes they are given as a shot, or injection.

    Several medicines are used to treat colorectal cancer. There are also several medicines available for treating side effects.

    Recommended Related to Colorectal Cancer

    Colorectal Cancer Diagnosis? What You Can Do Now

    Stunned. Afraid. Confused. Just a few of the words that might describe your state of mind when you learn you have colorectal cancer. And then there’s the big question you want to answer: “What do I do now?” You don’t have to tackle everything at once. But take a few steps now, and you’ll feel more prepared to begin treatment and handle what comes next. Here are a few ways you can get going in the right direction.

    Read the Colorectal Cancer Diagnosis? What You Can Do Now article > >

    Medicine choices

    A combination of drugs often works better than a single drug in treating colorectal cancer. The most commonly used drugs are:

    Hair loss can be a common side effect with some types of chemotherapy. But hair loss usually isn't a side effect of these drugs.

    Treating the side effects

    Your doctor may prescribe medicines that can help relieve side effects of chemotherapy. These side effects can include mouth sores, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. Your doctor may prescribe medicines to control nausea and vomiting.

    There also are things you can do at home to manage side effects. See Home Treatment for more information.

    What to think about

    Chemotherapy and radiation may be combined to treat some types of colorectal cancer. Radiation or chemotherapy given before or after surgery can destroy microscopic areas of cancer to increase the chances of a cure.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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