Preparing for Your First IV Chemotherapy Session

Minimal,close,up,of,unrecognizable,woman,getting,iv,drip,andChemotherapy, a common treatment option for cancer patients, can be administered in various ways. One of the most common methods is intravenous (IV) chemotherapy, which involves injecting medication directly into a vein. If you’re about to have your first IV chemotherapy session, it’s completely normal to feel anxious or unsure about what to expect. However, being prepared can help alleviate some of these concerns. In this blog post, we will discuss several steps you can take to prepare for your first IV chemotherapy session.

1. Gather Information

Before your first session, it’s essential to gather information about what to expect during IV chemotherapy. Speak with your healthcare team, who can provide you with accurate information about the process. Ask about the medications they will be using, the duration of the session, and any potential side effects you may experience. Their expertise and reassurance can help alleviate any fears or concerns you may have.

2. Support System

Having a support system in place during your IV chemotherapy session can make a significant difference in your overall experience. Ask a family member or friend if they can accompany you to provide emotional support, help keep you distracted, or assist you with any immediate needs. Having someone by your side can also offer another set of ears during discussions with your healthcare team.

3. Arrange Transportation

During and after your IV chemotherapy session, you may feel tired or experience side effects that affect your ability to drive. It’s crucial to arrange transportation to ensure you can get home safely without putting yourself or others at risk. Coordinate with a family member or friend who can drive you to and from your session. If you don’t have anyone available, explore alternative transportation options such as taxis, ride-sharing services, or medical transportation services provided by your treatment center.

4. Dress Comfortably

While IV chemotherapy sessions typically take place in a clinic or hospital setting, it’s important to dress comfortably to ensure you are as relaxed as possible. Opt for loose-fitting clothes that allow easy access to your arm for the IV placement. Layers are also a good idea, as the room temperature may vary, and you want to be able to adjust accordingly. Additionally, consider bringing a cozy blanket or scarf to keep you warm during the session.

5. Stay Hydrated and Nourished

IV chemotherapy sessions can be lengthy, lasting several hours. It’s crucial to stay hydrated and well-nourished before and during the session. Drink plenty of water in the days leading up to your appointment to keep your body hydrated. Additionally, have a light meal or snack before your session to ensure you have enough energy. However, avoid consuming heavy or greasy foods that may cause discomfort during the session.

6. Prepare Distractions

During your IV chemotherapy session, it’s essential to have distractions to keep your mind occupied and help pass the time. Prepare a bag with items that bring you comfort and relaxation, such as books, magazines, puzzles, music, or a tablet with your favorite shows or movies. Engaging in activities you enjoy can help divert your attention from any anxiety or discomfort you may be feeling.

7. Emotional Well-being

Undergoing chemotherapy can be emotionally challenging. Take time to prioritize your emotional well-being and find ways to manage stress and anxiety. This may include practicing deep breathing exercises, meditation, or engaging in activities that bring you joy. Communicate with your healthcare team if you’re feeling overwhelmed or need additional support.


Preparing for your first IV chemotherapy session involves gathering information, building a support system, arranging transportation, dressing comfortably, staying hydrated and nourished, preparing distractions, and prioritizing your emotional well-being. By taking these steps, you can approach your first session with a sense of preparedness and confidence, making the experience more manageable. Remember, your healthcare team is there to support you every step of the way, so don’t hesitate to reach out to them with any questions or concerns.

Got Questions? Let Us Help!

Since 1985, Chemique Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has been a recognized leader in the infusion pharmacy industry based in Wittier, California. Our therapies include compounded solutions for parenteral antibiotics, chemotherapy, pain medications, total Parenteral Nutrition (T.P.N), and other drugs. Some of our services include antibiotic therapies, hydration therapies, hormone replacement therapies, continuous or cyclical Total Parental Nutritional IV support, and more. At Chemique Pharmaceuticals, Inc. we are dedicated to having you feel your best. Call us today for more information!