A Patient’s Guide To Immuno-Oncology

Things You Need To Know About Cancer Immunotherapy

You may already know about some of the treatment options available for cancer, such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation or targeted therapy. With advances in science, there’s now another way to treat certain cancers: immuno- oncology, or sometimes known as cancer immunotherapy.

‘Immuno’ in immuno-oncology refers to your immune system. Immuno-oncology uses drugs known as immunotherapies that target your body’s immune system to help fight cancer.

This guide will help you understand cancer immunotherapy. Keep this for your reference. We’ve provided space for you to take notes and write down any questions you may have as you read through the guide.

The topics we cover in this guide include:

• How does immunotherapy work with my immune system to fight cancer?
• How is immunotherapy different from other types of cancer treatment?
• What side effects should I expect when taking immunotherapy?
• How might the tumor respond to immunotherapy?
• What can I do to play an active role in treatment?
• Is it normal to feel this way?
• What can I do to cope?
• Where can I get more information?


Nurse Line-

It is common to experience side effects from your treatment.  There are severe side effects that may result in the need for immediate medical attention.  It is important that you and your family are aware of these potential side effects to know when to contact your physician or nurse.  During office hours, please contact our  office at 704-947-6599. Follow the prompts for the nurse line to report your side effects. After hours, listen for the prompts to tell you how to contact the physician on call.  IF THERE IS AN EMERGENCY, PLEASE CALL 911. PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE MESSAGES ON THE NURSE LINE FOR EMERGENCIES.
Please call for:

  • Fever & Chills: a temperature 101˚ or greater and or chills
  • Difficulty Breathing
  • Diarrhea:  More than three loose, watery stools in 24 hours, uncontrolled by medication
  • Uncontrollable Nausea/Vomiting
  • Uncontrolled, Excessive, or Unexplained Bleeding or Bruising
  • Signs of Infection: Pain, burning, hesitancy and/or frequency when you urinate, a productive cough and or runny nose containing green or yellow sputum, an ear ache occurring one or both ears, red, swollen, or painful areas appearing on your skin
  • IV/Port Site Reactions: Redness, swelling, blistering, or sensitivity around your IV or port site