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Folfox Chemotherapy – Crucial Things to Learn

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Folfox chemotherapy is chemotherapy where a combination of drugs is used to treat colon cancer. Drugs like Folinic Acid, Oxaliplatin and Fluorouracil are used in this mode of treatment. The combinations of these drugs are used to destroy cancer cells in the body. In rare cases the only side effect found in this mode of treatment is that you may suffer from very high temperature. Chemotherapy is often used as a treatment for colorectal cancer, and treatment regimens typically consist of a combination of drugs in order to be more effective. FOLFOX is one regimen for advanced colorectal cancer, and consists of the drugs 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU), leucovorin (FA, LV), and oxaliplatin (Eloxatin). Not everyone will experience all the possible side effects, and side effects may vary due to the dosage given and your general health.

Folfox is usually given intravenously through an IV drip into the arm, but it can also be delivered through a central line directly into a large vein in your chest.  The drawback with a central line is that it must be placed before treatment begins and remains there until all treatments are completed. Like most chemotherapy FOLFOX is given in cycles.  Many factors go into how much treatment will be needed such as gender, weight, and the cancer’s response to the treatment.  Normally, up to 12 treatments may be given in two weeks long cycles.

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The common Side effects that may follow this treatment such as Increased risk of getting an infection from a drop in white blood cells – it is harder to fight infections, and you can become very ill. You may have headaches, aching muscles, a cough, sore throat, pain passing urine or feel cold and shivery. Tiredness and breathlessness due to a drop in red blood cells (anemia) – you may need a blood transfusion. Bruising more easily due to a drop in platelets – you may have nosebleeds, bleeding gums after brushing your teeth, or lots of tiny red spots or bruises on your arms or legs that is known as petechia.

Dealing with the side effects of folfox chemotherapy is an important part of getting well. The treatment that is used to fight off your cancer can cause you to feel more ill for a period of time. You will have to do exactly what the doctor has prescribed for the treatment of your cancer. Keeping up your health with a good diet and proper nutrition is important during this time.

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