Before treatment starts, you will
meet with a medical oncologist. This is a doctor who specializes in treating cancer with
medicines like chemotherapy. The doctor will discuss your treatment options with you and
explain what you might expect.
Depending on which chemotherapy
medicines you're getting and the reasons you're getting them, chemo can be given in
IV (intravenous). The chemo is given through a small
catheter that's been put into a vein. The medicine may drip in slowly over several
hours, or it may be given more quickly over a few minutes. When given this way,
the chemo enters the blood and can reach cancer cells all over the body.
Intralesional. A small needle is used to inject the
chemo medicine right into the KS lesions. The advantage of giving chemo this way
is that most of it stays in the area where it was injected. This limits the side
effects it causes. But chemo given this way can only treat the lesions it's
injected into. It can’t reach cancer cells in other parts of the body.
Chemotherapy is usually given in an
outpatient setting. That means that you get it at a hospital, clinic, or healthcare
provider's office. You can go home after the treatment. Less often, you may need to stay
in the hospital during treatment. Nurses will give the chemo and watch you closely for
problems or reactions during treatments. Each chemo treatment may last for a while. You
may want to take along something to do, like read a book, listen to music, or watch
To reduce the damage to healthy
cells and give them a chance to recover, chemo is often given in cycles. Each cycle
consists of 1 or more days of treatment, followed by some time to rest and recover.
Your healthcare provider will discuss your chemotherapy schedule with you.