Chemotherapy uses medications to kill cancer.
Worldwide, this is the most common non-surgical therapy for retinoblastoma.
Hearing your child needs chemotherapy can be very scary. You may know friends who received this treatment, or perhaps a character in your favourite soap opera had chemotherapy.
Many different drugs are used to treat cancer, and what you already know about chemotherapy may be very different to your child’s experience.
Having information and knowledge about chemotherapy for retinoblastoma can reduce your anxiety about treatment, and help you ask questions.
Chemotherapy for Retinoblastoma
Chemotherapy is the most common non-surgical therapy for retinoblastoma, given for several reasons in different ways and over varying timescales.
Used during a general anaesthetic, IAC delivers potent chemotherapy directly into the eye, via a catheter inserted into the femoral artery.
Several chemotherapy drugs are used in combination to treat retinoblastoma.
Monitoring your child’s health and open communication with the doctor is important throughout chemotherapy treatment and recovery.
A long, flexible tube can be surgically inserted into the right atrium of the heart to deliver drugs and take blood samples, eliminating the need for many IVs.
Central venous catheters require special care to minimize risk of infection and other complications that can be especially problematic tor a child receiving chemotherapy.
Keeping track of your child’s blood test results will help you identify patterns that indicate how the body is reacting to chemotherapy.
Contact the doctor immediately if your child has any of these symptoms between treatments.