Risks and Side Effects of Immunotherapy

Like any other cancer treatment method, immunotherapy has its imperfections. Immunotherapy aims at improving the body’s defense mechanism so that your body can fight the cancerous cells on its own. The body will ensure that the white blood cells and lymph system work well in curtailing the spread of cancer. Your doctor will advise you to go for immunotherapy if you have the following types of cancer, breast, colon, prostate, liver, ovarian and bran among other types of cancers. Some of the risks and side effects associated with Immunotherapy include;

Not Everybody Responds to It, and It Takes Time to Bear Results

So far, immunotherapy has only worked on 50 percent of the patients who have tried it as a treatment option. It is not clear why the treatment is not working on some patients. Studies are still ongoing to get better approach of administering immunotherapy. There are also many drugs that are yet to be approved and be used in immunotherapy. When you choose immunotherapy as your treatment option, be patient, the results won’t come overnight. The cancer cells won’t die as fast as they do with other treatment options. The body will take some time before it can have the required defense mechanism to attack all the cancerous cells in your body. It is important to note that with time, the body may adopt and get used to the drugs administered. In this case, cancer will still be spreading even if you are still under medication.

Cause Mouth Sores and Destroys Other Major Organs

The mouth sores are as a result of damage to the cells in your mouth and throats. The cell damage is a side effect of the drugs administered by your doctor as part of the immunotherapy procedure. Both the mouth and the throat will thus be prone to infections. The sores preset themselves between five to fourteen days after the treatment commences. The condition of having painful mouth sores is referred to as mucositis. By observing proper dental hygiene, you will lower the breakout o the sores greatly. Another detrimental side effect of immunotherapy is the malfunctioning of major organs such as the heart, liver, and kidney. The medication used interferes with normal functioning of the organs posing a significant risk to your health. Some patients report having heart palpitations from time to time. Others complain of having a stuffy head. The treatment also increases the risk of having blood clots.

Brings about Skin Reactions and Flu-like Symptoms

You are likely to get a sore, turn red or a swell at the point where the treatment is administered into your body. Due to this irritation on the skin, some people become more sensitive to sunlight. Others will have cracks around the fingernails. The delicate skin makes the patients scratch a lot thus exposing them to more infections. The dryness of the skin combined with inflammation of the nails makes it hard to carry out any task smoothly. Every small role becomes painful and dreadful. Some of the drugs used in immunotherapy will make you have flu-like symptoms. You will feel fatigued most of the time, nauseated, experience chills, at times vomit and you will be weak and dizzy. If you are experiencing these symptoms, seek guidance from your doctor and stay hydrated at all times.

Immunotherapy can be administered alone or alongside other treatment like chemotherapy or radiation. Allow your doctor to advice on the best treatment option for you.