When chemotherapy is part of your cancer care plan, turn to the compassionate team at UC San Diego Health. Count on us to answer your questions and to provide treatments in a comfortable, supportive environment.

What’s Chemotherapy?

Chemotherapy (chemo) uses drugs to kill cancer cells or keep reproducing cells from growing. Chemo may be the only cancer treatment you receive or part of a combination of other therapies. Your doctor may recommend chemo to:

  • Shrink a tumor
  • Make radiation therapy more effective
  • Kill any cancer cells that remain after surgery or radiation therapy

Types of Chemotherapy

You may be given chemo by:

  • Injection
  • Pill (oral chemotherapy)
  • Intravenously (IV), also known as infusion therapy and is the most common way to receive chemo
  • In conjunction with surgery to remove certain abdominal tumors (HIPEC)

Cancer Treatment Programs

San Diego's Best Cancer Care

At UC San Diego Health, you find cancer specialists who are experienced and skilled in treating all types of cancer.

Patient & Family Support Services

At UC San Diego Health, your care goes beyond treating disease. It also includes supporting you and your loved ones emotionally throughout your cancer journey. Most of our support services are free.

Browse All Support Services

Palliative Care

Palliative care is designed to relieve suffering and improve your quality of life by focusing on your physical and emotional comfort during treatment. Palliative care is not reserved for end-of-life care.

Read About Palliative Care