Pancreatic cancer is a type of cancer that starts in the pancreas. This body organ, the pancreas, is a flat, long gland that is sitting behind the human stomach of the upper abdomen. Pancreatic cancer is one of the most difficult cancers to detect early. It often doesn’t cause symptoms until it has spread to other parts of the body.
Certain types of pancreatic cancer can be treated with chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is a cancer treatment that uses drugs to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy can be given through a vein in the arm (intravenous) or by mouth (orally). Chemotherapy is often given in combination with other treatments, such as surgery or radiation therapy.
The most common type of chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer is called gemcitabine-based chemotherapy. It is used to treat about 80% of all cases of pancreatic cancer. Chemotherapy is also sometimes used with other treatments, such as surgery or radiation therapy. If you’re looking for additional treatment options for pancreatic cancer, you can check out pancreatic cancer clinical trials at Power.
The use of chemotherapy in pancreatic cancer
Before surgery (neoadjuvant chemotherapy)
Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is a type of chemotherapy that is given before surgery. This treatment is usually given to people with cancer with large tumors that cannot be removed with surgery. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is also given to people with a high risk of cancer returning after surgery. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is not a cure for pancreatic cancer but can sometimes improve the chances of a successful surgery.
After surgery (adjuvant chemotherapy)
Pancreatic cancer is difficult to treat, and adjuvant chemotherapy can be an important part of the treatment plan. Chemotherapy can help to shrink the tumor and kill any remaining cancer cells. It can also help to relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life for patients with pancreatic cancer.
After surgery, adjuvant chemotherapy is often used in pancreatic cancer. This treatment uses powerful drugs to kill cancer cells.
Chemotherapy for advanced pancreatic cancer
Gemcitabine (Gemzar) is a chemotherapy drug that is used to treat various types of cancer, including pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is a type of cancer that affects the pancreas, which is a small organ located behind the stomach. The pancreas is responsible for producing enzymes that help the body digest food. Gemcitabine works by interfering with the ability of cancer cells to reproduce. This results in the death of the cancer cells. Gemcitabine is usually given as an infusion, a type of injection given through a vein.
5-fluorouracil (5-FU) or Capecitabine (Xeloda)
Cancer of the pancreas is a serious and potentially deadly disease. Treatment options are limited, and the prognosis is often poor. Chemotherapy is one treatment option that may be considered for advanced pancreatic cancer.
Two main types of chemotherapy may be used to treat pancreatic cancer: 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and capecitabine (Xeloda). 5-FU is a classic chemotherapy drug that has been used to treat a variety of cancers for many years. Capecitabine is a newer chemotherapy drug that is similar to 5-FU.
Both 5-FU and capecitabine can be effective in treating pancreatic cancer. The decision of which chemotherapy drug to use is often based on a variety of factors, including the type and stage of cancer, the patient’s overall health, and the side effects of the drugs.
Irinotecan (Camptosar) or Liposomal Irinotecan (Onivyde).
Pancreatic cancer is a particularly aggressive form of cancer with a very low survival rate. Treatment options are limited, and chemotherapy is often the only hope for patients with advanced disease. Irinotecan (Camptosar) and liposomal irinotecan (Onivyde) are two chemotherapy drugs used to treat pancreatic cancer. Both drugs have been shown to be effective in treating the disease.
Irinotecan is a traditional chemotherapy drug that works by interfering with the cancer cell’s ability to divide and grow. Liposomal irinotecan is a newer formulation of the drug that is encased in a lipid (fat) molecule, which helps the drug to be better absorbed by the body.
Platinum agents: Cisplatin and Oxaliplatin (Eloxatin)
Cisplatin and Oxaliplatin (Eloxatin) are two platinum-based chemotherapies used to treat advanced pancreatic cancer. Cisplatin works by interfering with the DNA of cancer cells, while Oxaliplatin works by inhibiting cell growth. Both drugs are effective in treating advanced pancreatic cancer but may cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.
Cisplatin and Oxaliplatin are two platinum agents that are commonly used to treat advanced pancreatic cancer. Platinum agents work by interfering with the cancer cell’s ability to divide and grow. Cisplatin is typically given as an infusion, while Oxaliplatin is given as an injection.
These drugs work by targeting the DNA of cancer cells and preventing them from growing and spreading. Platinum-based chemotherapy is usually given with other cancer treatments, such as surgery and radiation therapy. Cisplatin and Oxaliplatin are effective treatments for advanced pancreatic cancer, with an overall response rate of approximately 20-30%.