Nursing

A 47-year-old female cancer patient underwent insulin potentiation chemotherapy, which is a safe approach to treating aggressive forms of cancer. Since cancer cells have up to 20 times more insulin receptors than normal cells, insulin is able to open channels in cancer cell walls and allow nutrients to enter. The administration of insulin triggers cancer cells to open their membranes in order to obtain the glucose they require. When a chemotherapy drug is then administered, followed quickly by glucose, the cancer cells take in almost the entire dose of the chemotherapy drug, which poisons and kills them. Because of this insulin potentiation, only about onetenth the amount of standard chemotherapy is needed.

1. Why do normal, healthy cells not experience any significant toxic reactions to the chemotherapy drug administered by this method?

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2. What are the signs and symptoms of overdose of insulin?

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