NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Esophageal Cancer - page 36

36
NCCN Guidelines for Patients
®
: Esophageal Cancer
Version 1.2013
Part 4: Overview of cancer treatments
Trastuzumab is given with chemotherapy. It is given
as an injection into a vein. The drug then travels in the
bloodstream to treat cancer throughout the body.
You may have a mild flu-like response to the first dose of
trastuzumab that includes fever, chills, headache, muscle
aches, and nausea. This response is less common with
the second and third doses. Rare side effects include
damage to the heart or lungs.
Complementary and alternative medicine
You may hear about other treatments from your
family and friends. They may suggest using CAM
(
c
omplementary and
a
lternative
m
edicine). CAM
is a group of treatments that aren’t often given by
doctors. There is much interest today in CAM for
cancer, and many CAMs are being studied to see
if they are truly helpful.
Complementary medicines are treatments given
along with usual medical treatments. While CAMs
aren’t known to kill cancer cells, they may improve
your comfort and well-being. Two examples are
acupuncture for pain management and yoga for
relaxation.
Alternative medicine is used in place of usual
medicine. Some alternative medicines are sold as
cures even though they haven’t been proven to
work. If there was good proof that CAMs or other
treatments cured cancer, they would be included
in this booklet.
It is important to tell your treatment team if you are
using any CAMs. They can tell you which CAMs
may be helpful and which CAMs may limit how
well treatments work.
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