Chemotherapy services are delivered both as outpatient service at the day care facility and inpatient service in the wards. Chemotherapy regimes are prescribed up by the oncologist after baseline assessment of blood parameters and organ function tests, including tumor markers. Evidence based medicine is practiced for the optimum selection of chemotherapy regimens for specific tumor subtypes and stages, based on the updated results of clinical trials conducted world-wide. Chemotherapy regimens differ in their duration, toxicities and benefits, so the options are discussed with the patient before deciding on the best available option.
The chemotherapy nurses are well trained in the safe administration and handling of chemotherapy and are also adept at early identification of chemotherapy related toxicities and instituting timely care. Chemotherapy is reconstituted in a sterile atmosphere for administration and is delivered using automated infusion pumps to deliver the agent within the specified time period. More than 5000 patients receive day care chemotherapy annually in the department.
Various types of conventional and dose dense chemotherapy for solid tumors are administered in our department. Targeted therapy is a newer form of cancer treatment incorporating agents targeting various proliferative pathways in cancer cells.Many of these agents are available in Malaysia, like Trastuzumab and Lapatinib for breast cancer, Bevacizumab and Cetuximab for colon cancer, Erlotinib and Gefitinib for lung cancer, Sunitinib for renal cancer and Sorafenib for Hepatocellular cancer.