Induction chemotherapy is the first step in the fight against acute myeloid leukemia. High doses of cytotoxic drugs in the body is destroyed the bulk of the tumor cells, which allows for rapid remission. The patient may be prescribed 2 cycles of such treatment at the physician’s discretion.
The regimen is designed individually based on diagnostics findings. During the first visit, the oncologist examines the patient, reviews his/her case history and prescribes the required tests:
- complete blood count,
- blood chemistry,
- cytogenetic analysis.
The treatment is carried out in a hospital setting. The patient is hospitalized for up to 20 days. All the while, s/he is recommended to follow strict hygiene rules and limit contacts with other people.
Preference is given to the combined use of cytostatics. The drug is administered intravenously, and sometimes intrathecally (into the cavity of the spinal canal). The physician chooses the regimen according to the leukemia type.
The state of the patient is monitored by the medical staff in the clinic. The treatment course can be accompanied by:
- general malaise,
- bleeding disorders,
- proneness to infectious diseases.
To reduce the side effects, the symptomatic therapy is prescribed. The total cost of medication will depend on the cycle intensity and treatment duration.
Remission is diagnosed based on the test findings. On the day of discharge, the patient talks to the oncologist who provides him/her recommendations for further treatment.