20375 W. 151st Street
Olathe, KS  66061
Phone (913) 780-4000
Fax:  (913) 780-4038

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Understanding Chemotherapy

What is Chemotherapy?
Chemotherapy is a general term which refers to a drug or drugs used in an attempt to kill cancer cells. In many cases, some normal cells are also injured, which can result in side effects. The chemotherapy administered in the office is intravenous (given by vein). Increasingly, side effects can be minimized with the use of supportive medications (such as anti-nausea medication).
What should patients who are about to undergo chemotherapy expect?
If you are receiving chemotherapy, you will be greeted by one of our nurses after your visit with the physician and moved to one of our multiple chemotherapy infusion rooms. There are private and semi-private spaces available. In most cases, an IV will need to be placed, which is typically followed by the administration of anti-nausea medications, and then chemotherapy. The duration of your treatment depends on the drugs chosen by your physician. Our nurses will check on you frequently during your treatment. Someone is always near at hand if you have a question or concern. After your treatment, we are equally available. If you have a question or a problem, a physician is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you.
What can patients bring to their chemotherapy treatment sessions?
You can bring up to two visitors with you to your treatment, but we ask that you not bring children under the age of 12 unless the other visitor is a parent or supervising adult. You are also welcome to bring books, your laptop or other electronic device, iPOD, DVDs, food, or drink. We have a reasonable selection of DVDs available to watch during your treatment if you desire. Coffee, water and snacks are available to you.
How should chemotherapy patients prepare for their visit (diet, meds, someone to drive them, etc.)?
Some chemotherapy treatments require “premedication” – i.e., pills you will take at home prior to treatment. If you need premedication, you will be informed by your physician or nurse. You may eat prior to treatment. For most treatments you will not need to have a driver, but you may want to arrange for someone to drive you to your first visit. 
What items are made available to chemotherapy patients to help them relax during treatment?
Since some treatments may last for two hours or longer, we have a variety of movies available on DVD. A selection of magazines is available, as well as a variety of puzzle books. Many patients bring their own materials. Coffee and water are available.