Home  >  Health Encyclopedia  >  Health Encyclopedia Home

Health Encyclopedia

 

Health Encyclopedia Home



Making the Decision to Have Chemotherapy for Oral Cancer

Making the Decision to Have Chemotherapy for Oral Cancer

Your doctor may suggest chemotherapy to treat oral cancer in any of these situations:

  • You are having radiation after surgery for oral cancer. Chemotherapy is sometimes given during the period of radiation to help the radiation work better. Your doctor may suggest this if you had more than 1 lymph node removed. This is called radiosensitization. And is sometimes called adjuvant chemoradiotherapy. The goal of this treatment is to reduce the chance that the cancer will come back in the future.

  • All the cancer could not be removed by surgery. In this case, chemotherapy can be done both before radiation (called neoadjuvant or induction chemotherapy), or during the period of radiation to help the radiation work better, or both. The goal of this treatment is often to cure the cancer, even if it can't be removed by surgery.

  • You have metastatic oral cancer. In this stage, the cancer has spread to other parts of your body. Chemotherapy probably can't cure this cancer. However, it may help you feel better and live longer. It may help you swallow, ease bone pain, and reduce fatigue.

Your medical team will review the chemotherapy options appropriate to your condition. To help deal with the medical information and remember all your questions, it is helpful to bring a family member or close friend with you to doctors' appointments. In addition, bringing a written list of concerns will make it easier for you to remember your questions 

 
Related Items
Wellness Library
  Oral Cancer Checkups Protect Lives
Cancer Source
  Oral Cancer Introduction
  Statistics About Oral Cancer
  Am I At Risk for Oral Cancer?
  How Can I Prevent Oral Cancer?
  What Are the Symptoms of Oral Cancer?
  Understanding Your Stage of Oral Cancer
  What Happens During Surgery for Oral Cancer
  What to Expect During Radiation Therapy for Oral Cancer
  What Happens During Chemotherapy for Oral Cancer
  Do What You Can to Ease Side Effects of Treatment for Oral Cancer
  How Does My Doctor Find Oral Cancer?
  Important Information About Your Treatment Options for Oral Cancer
  Common Side Effects After Surgery for Oral Cancer
  Common Side Effects After Radiation Therapy for Oral Cancer
  Tests that Help Evaluate Oral Cancer
  I've Just Been Told I Have Oral Cancer
  Can I Survive Oral Cancer? What Is My Prognosis?
  How Can I Keep Oral Cancer From Recurring?
  What Can I Do If I’m At Risk for Oral Cancer?
  Tell Your Healthcare Team How You Feel During Treatment for Oral Cancer
  What to Expect After Chemotherapy for Oral Cancer
  Questions to Ask About Treatment for Oral Cancer
  Surgery for Oral Cancer
  Making the Decision to Have Radiation Therapy for Oral Cancer
Cancer FAQs
  Frequently Asked Questions About Oral Cancer
NCI Patient Summary
  Salivary Gland Cancer
  Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer
  Screening for Oral Cancer
  Oral Cancer Prevention (PDQ®)
Adult Diseases and Conditions
  Oral Cancer
  Oral Cancer and Tobacco