Why Chemotherapy is Used for Colon Cancer Patients

What is the purpose of using chemotherapy in patients with colon cancer?

136237601It is possible for cancer cells to still be floating around in a patient’s bloodstream after colon cancer surgery. These cells can enter other parts of the body and cause stage four cancer. Dr. Madappa Kundranda says the main purpose of using chemotherapy in patients with colon cancer is to kill or reduce those cancer cells.

This therapy is done to reduce the risk of recurrence, potentially curing the patient. As with any medical procedure, there are risks and benefits to using chemotherapy. Watch “The Risks and Benefits of Chemotherapy” to learn more about it. Every chemotherapy treatment is personalized, so talk to your doctor to learn more about what you can expect during treatment. Many patients experience fatigue, weakness, lethargy, nausea, and vomiting during chemo treatment. Doctors currently have medications to help with those side effects. Patients experiencing any side effects from chemo should tell their doctors. Medical professionals can do a better job with more information. Watch “Chemotherapy Side Effects” to learn more.

To learn how to lower your risk of recurrence after chemotherapy watch “Lowering the Risk of Recurrence after Chemotherapy.”

Video Transcripts

Madappa Kundranda, MD: So, this is the purpose of using chemotherapy in patients with colon cancer.

The purpose of using chemotherapy in colon cancer is mainly in the context of treating stage 2 and stage 3 colon cancers with the goal of a potential cure. The reason why this is important is because after a surgical resection, there is still a possibility that the cancer cells that are floating around in the bloodstream which can deposit themselves into the liver, the lung, the bone, and the like and cause stage 4 disease. Hence, the purpose of chemotherapy is to help with the potential cure in these patients.

Madappa Kundranda
Dr. Madappa Kundranda obtained his medical degree from Bangalore University in India, before earning a PhD in cancer biology from Meharry Medical College in Nashville. Dr. Kundranda next completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Fairview Hospital, a Cleveland Clinic Hospital. He then finished a hematology/oncology fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, AZ. He is currently a medical oncologist with Western Regional Medical Center.


This information should not be relied upon as a substitute for personal medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Use the information provided on this site solely at your own risk. If you have any concerns about your health, please consult with a physician.

© 2017 Cancer Answers LLC