Words to Know
Also called fexofenadine, Allegra is an antihistamine used to treat certain allergy symptoms by blocking a chemical released during an allergic response that causes itching, sneezing, runny nose, wheezing, and watery eyes. Antihistamines are given as pretreatment when using paclitaxel, a chemotherapy agent. Antihistamines can prevent hypersensitivity reactions with paclitaxel use, such as decreased blood pressure and impaired breathing.
Another term for 'mainstream medicine,' also called biomedicine, conventional medicine, orthodox medicine, and Western medicine. Allopathic medicine is the system in which medical doctors and other healthcare professionals treat symptoms and diseases using medicines, radiation, or surgery.
The lack or loss of hair from areas of the body where hair is usually found. Alopecia can be a side effect of some cancer treatments, including doxorubicin (Adriamycin) and paclitaxel (Taxol). Some breast cancer medicines cause only thinning or partial hair loss, and others cause no hair loss at all.
A loss of feeling or awareness caused by medicines or other substances. Anesthesia keeps a person from feeling pain during surgery or other procedures. Local anesthesia is a loss of feeling in one small area of the body. Regional anesthesia is a loss of feeling in a part of the body, such as an arm or leg. General anesthesia is a loss of feeling and a complete loss of awareness that feels like a very deep sleep.
A medicine used to treat symptoms of anxiety, such as feelings of fear, dread, uneasiness and muscle tightness, which may contribute to pain associated with breast cancer. Most antianxiety medicines block the action of certain chemicals in the nervous system. Also called anxiolytic and anxiolytic agent. Examples of anti-anxiety medicines are diazepam (Valium) and lorazepam (Ativan).