Chemotherapy for endometrial cancer
Chemotherapy (chemo) is the use of cancer-fighting drugs to kill cancer cells. Usually these drugs are given into a vein or by mouth. Once the drugs enter the bloodstream they spread throughout the body. Chemo is useful in treating cancer that has spread. One or more chemo drugs may be used.
Side effects of chemo
While these drugs kill cancer cells, they can also damage some normal cells. This can cause side effects. Which side effects happen will depend on the type of drugs given, the amount or dose, how often treatment is done, and how long treatment lasts. Common side effects are:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Hair loss
- Mouth sores
- A higher chance of infection (from low white blood cell counts)
- Bleeding or bruising after minor cuts or injuries (from a shortage of blood platelets)
- Shortness of breath or tiredness (from low red blood cell counts)
Most side effects go away after treatment ends. If you have problems with side effects, talk with your doctor or nurse, as there are often ways to help.
More detailed information about chemo for endometrial cancer can be found in our document Endometrial Cancer.
Last Medical Review: 11/08/2013
Last Revised: 02/03/2014