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Cancer Treatment Options

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Last Updated: 02 July 2021

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If you have cancer, your doctor will recommend one or more ways to treat the disease. The most common treatments are surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Other options include targeted therapy, immunotherapy, laser, hormonal therapy, and others. Here is an overview of different treatments for cancer and how they work. Surgery is a common treatment for many types of cancer. During the operation, surgeons take out mass of cancerous cells and some of nearby tissue. Sometimes, surgery is done to relieve side effects caused by tumor. Chemotherapy refers to drugs used to kill cancer cells. Drugs may be given by mouth or into blood vessel. Different types of drugs may be given together at the same time or one after another. Radiation therapy uses x - rays, particles, or radioactive seeds to kill cancer cells. Cancer cells grow and divide faster than normal cells in the body. Because radiation is most harmful to quickly growing cells, radiation therapy damages cancer cells more than normal cells. This prevents cancer cells from growing and dividing, and leads to cell death. External beam. This is the most common form. It aims x - rays or particles at tumor from outside the body. Internal beam. This form delivers radiation inside your body. It may be given by radioactive seeds placed into or near tumor; liquid or pill that you swallow; or through vein. Target therapy uses drugs to stop cancer from growing and spreading. It does less harm to normal cells than other treatments. Standard chemotherapy works by killing cancer cells and some normal cells. Target Treatment zeroes in on specific targets in cancer cells. These targets play a role in how cancer cells grow and survive. Using these targets, drug disables cancer cells so they cannot spread. Target therapy drugs work in a few different ways. They may: turn off process in cancer cells that cause them to grow and spread Trigger Cancer cells to die on their own. Kill Cancer cells directly immunotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that relies on the body's ability to fight infection. It uses substances made by the body or in the lab to help the immune system work harder or in a more targeted way to fight cancer. This helps your body get rid of cancer cells. Stopping or slowing growth of Cancer cells Preventing Cancer from spreading to other parts of the body Boosting the immune system's ability to get rid of Cancer cells These drugs are designed to seek and attack certain parts of Cancer cell. Some have toxins or radioactive substances attached to them. Immunotherapy is given by IV. Hormone therapy is used to treat cancers that are fuelled by hormones, such as breast, prostate, and ovarian cancers. It uses surgery, or drugs to stop or block the body's natural hormones. This helps slow the growth of cancer cells. Surgery involves removing organs that make hormones: ovaries or testes.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Types of Cancer Treatment

There are many types of cancer treatment. The types of treatment that you receive will depend on the type of cancer you have and how advanced it is. Some people with cancer will have only one treatment. But most people have a combination of treatments, such as surgery with chemotherapy and / or radiation therapy. When you need treatment for cancer, you have a lot to learn and think about. It is normal to feel overwhelmed and confused. But, talking with your doctor and learning about types of treatment you may have can help you feel more in control. Our Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Treatment may help.


Targeted Therapies

Also called endocrine therapy, it targets cancers that use hormones to grow. There are two kinds of this therapy: one that stops you from making hormones, and one that keeps hormones from working the way they should. You can either take them as pills or get them through shot. Sometimes you may get surgery to remove organs that make hormones, like ovaries or testicles. Doctors use hormone therapy with other methods to shrink tumors before surgery or treatment, or to kill cancer cells that have spread to other parts of your body. It can also lower the chances that your cancer will return.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Treatment 1: Surgery

Surgery is an option for most cancers other than blood cancers, with specialized cancer surgeons attempting to remove all or most of solid tumor. It is an especially effective treatment for early stage cancers that have spread to other parts of the body. While it depends on the size of tumor and other factors, many patients with stage 1 cancers don't need any other treatment except for surgery, said Marta Batus, MD, medical oncologist at Rush. And surgery can play a role in cancer treatment even when the tumor has spread beyond its original site. Our options for treating cancer even at later stages have grow, and surgery is a big part of that, Budds say. The role of surgery has expand, and it is very encouraging. Depending on the cancer and stage, minimally invasive surgery may be an option. For example, thoracic surgeons at Rush often use video - assist thoracoscopic surgery, minimally invasive procedure, to remove early stage lung cancer tumors. Vats use smaller incisions than open surgery and typically offer patients less pain, shorter hospital stays after surgery and fewer complications.


Treating stage I breast cancer

Most often, these cancers are treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. For HER2 - positive tumors, target drug trastuzumab is given as well, sometimes along with pertuzumab. This may shrink the tumor enough for woman to have breast - conserving surgery. If the tumor doesnt shrink enough, mastectomy is do. Nearby lymph nodes will also need to be check. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is often not an option for Stage III cancers, so axillary lymph node dissection is usually done. Often, radiation therapy is needed after surgery. If breast reconstruction is done, it is usually delayed until after radiation is complete. In some cases, additional chemo is given after surgery as well. After surgery, some women with HER2 - positive cancers will be treated with trastuzumab for up to a year. Many women with HER2 - positive cancers will be treated first with trastuzumab followed by surgery and then more trastuzumab for up to a year. If after neoadjuvant therapy, any residual cancer is found at time of surgery, trastuzumab may be changed to a different drug, called ado - trastuzumab emtansine, which is given every 3 weeks for 13 doses. For people with hormone receptor - positive cancer in lymph nodes who have completed year of trastuzumab, doctor might also recommend additional treatment with an oral drug called neratinib for a year. Women with hormone receptor - positive breast cancers will also get adjuvant hormone therapy which can typically be taken at the same time as trastuzumab.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Treatment 2: Immunotherapy

Immunotherapy is a treatment that uses certain parts of a person's immune system to fight diseases such as cancer. This can be done in a couple of ways: stimulating, or boosting, natural defenses of your immune system so it works harder or smarter to find and attack cancer cells Making substances in the lab that are just like immune system components and using them to help restore or improve how your immune system work to find and attack cancer cells in last few decades Immunotherapy has become important part of treating some types of cancer. New Immunotherapy treatments are being tested and approve, and new ways of working with the immune system are being discovered at a very fast pace. Immunotherapy works better for some types of cancer than for others. It is used by itself for some of these cancers, but for others it seems to work better when used with other types of treatment.


Types of cancer immunotherapy

Immunotherapy treatments have been approved or are being tested for more than 20 kinds of cancers: bladder Cancer. Today, there are six FDA - approved options for bladder cancer. They include: targeted antibodies. This type of treatment disrupts cancer cells and alerts the immune system to target and kill them. Cancer Vaccines. They help your body kill or stop cancer cells or keep them from coming back. Immune system modulators, which boost your overall immune response. Checkpoint inhibitors are one example. Brain Cancer. There are two approved types of targeted antibodies for brain and nervous system cancers. Researchers are testing several others in clinical trials to find out if immunotherapy might work where other treatments have fail. Breast Cancer. At first, doctors thought immunotherapy was a poor option for breast cancer. But newer studies suggest that certain women may benefit from it. They include women who make too much of a protein receptor called HER2. Several types of targeted antibodies take aim at HER2 pathway. In 2019, FDA will also approve the first Checkpoint inhibitor for breast Cancer. Cervical Cancer. Doctors use three Cancer Vaccines to treat cervical cancer. FDA also approved one Checkpoint inhibitor and one monoclonal antibody, type of targeted therapy. Childhood Cancer. There are several approved immunotherapy options for childhood cancer, such as certain types of leukemia, lymphoma, and brain cancer. These include: targeted antibodies Checkpoint inhibitors Adoptive cell therapy such as CAR T - cell therapy, where your own T - cells are genetically modified to help your immune system find and destroy cancer cells.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Treatment 3: Targeted therapies

Target Cancer therapies are drugs or other substances that block growth and spread of Cancer by interfering with specific molecules that are involved in growth, progression, and spread of Cancer. Target Cancer therapies are sometimes called molecularly targeted drugs, molecularly targeted therapies, precision medicines, or similar names. Target therapies act on specific molecular targets that are associated with cancer, whereas most standard chemotherapies act on all rapidly dividing normal and cancerous cells. Target therapies are deliberately chosen or designed to interact with their target, whereas many standard chemotherapies are identified because they kill cells. Target therapies are often cytostatic, whereas standard chemotherapy agents are cytotoxic. Target therapies are currently the focus of much anticancer drug development. They are the cornerstone of precision medicine, form of medicine that uses information about persons genes and proteins to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease. Many targeted cancer therapies have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat specific types of cancer. Others are being studied in Clinical Trials, and many more are in preclinical testing. Development of targeted therapies requires identification of good targetsthat is, targets that play a key role in cancer cell growth and survival. One approach to identifying potential targets is to compare amounts of individual proteins in cancer cells with those in normal cells. Proteins that are present in cancer cells but not normal cells or that are more abundant in cancer cells would be potential targets, especially if they are known to be involved in cell growth or survival. An example of such a differentially expressed target is the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 protein. Her - 2 is expressed at high levels on the surface of some cancer cells. Several targeted therapies are direct against HER - 2, including Trastuzumab, which is approved to treat certain breast and stomach cancers that overexpress HER - 2. Another approach to identifying potential targets is to determine whether cancer cells produce mutant proteins that drive cancer progression. For example, cell growth signaling protein BRAF is present in altered form in many melanomas. Vemurafenib targets this mutant form of BRAF protein and is approved to treat patients with inoperable or metastatic melanoma that contains this altered BRAF protein. Researchers also look for abnormalities in chromosomes that are present in cancer cells but not in normal cells. Sometimes these chromosome abnormalities result in the creation of fusion genes whose product, called fusion protein, may drive cancer development. Such fusion proteins are potential targets for targeted cancer therapies. For example, Imatinib mesylate targets BCR - ABL fusion protein, which is made from pieces of two genes that join together in some leukemia cells and promote growth of leukemic cells. Once the candidate target has been identify, next step is to develop therapy that affects the target in a way that interferes with its ability to promote cancer cell growth or survival.


Examples of targeted therapies

Some types of cancer, like CML, almost always have target that treatment can focus on. But sometimes, your doctor will need to test your tumor to see if it has any targets. Sometimes they 'll do a biopsy - take a small sample from the tumor and check it in the lab. Even if you have the same type of cancer as someone else, you might not have the same target. Not all breast cancers are HER2 - positive. Target colon Cancer medicines like cetuximab won't work if you have KRAS gene mutation. Before your doctor recommends targeted therapy, you might have to try other treatments first. Target therapy is often given along with other treatments.


Types of targeted therapy

There are two main types of targeted therapies: small molecule medicines and monoclonal antibodies. Small molecule medicines are small enough to slip inside cancer cells and destroy them. You can often spot small molecule meds because their generic names end in - ib. For example, imatinib treats chronic myelogenous leukemia and other cancers by blocking signals that tell tumor cells to grow. Monoclonal antibodies are too big to get into cells. Instead, they attack targets on outside of cells or right around them. Sometimes they re used to launch chemo and radiation straight into tumors. You usually get them through an IV in vein in your arm at hospital or clinic. Sometimes they re given shot. Generic names of monoclonal antibodies end in - mab. Bevacizumab is a monoclonal antibody that works by blocking blood vessels that feed tumors. Scientists have come up with many small molecule meds and monoclonal antibodies that make use of different targets to treat cancer in different ways. Hormone therapies stop your body from making hormones. Some breast and prostate cancers need to grow, or they keep hormones from working. Breast cancer medicines like tamoxifen block female hormone estrogen. Aromatase inhibitors lower amount of estrogen in your body. For prostate cancer, doctors may prescribe meds that block male sex hormones or stop your body from making them.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Treatment 4: Active surveillance

Active Surveillance may be all that is needed for certain types of cancers. Your doctor may recommend this approach if cancer is at an early stage and is growing slowly or not at all. For example, doctors often recommend Active Surveillance for Prostate Cancer, which tends to grow very slowly. Doctors monitor patients Prostate - specific antigen with blood tests and monitor symptoms. If or when symptoms worsen or tests show that cancer is growing more rapidly, they then begin discussing additional treatments. Often, patients who are receiving Active Surveillance have no symptoms and go on living their lives as usual, Batus say. Surveillance may also be an option for patients who want a break from treatment side effects or for those who have exhausted all other treatment options.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Treatment 5: Integrative medicine

Integrative Medicine can be an effective complement to Standard Treatment, helping to minimize physical and emotional stress of Cancer Treatment. For example, psychotherapy and massage therapy can help ease patients ' anxiety as they cope with diagnosis; Acupuncture can be beneficial for pain relief; and nutrition counseling can keep patients from losing too much weight during treatment and keeping their body as healthy as possible. Anything you can DO to keep patients mentally and physically well while they handle the stress of having cancer is beneficial, Budds say. It is just one of growing SET of tools we have to help our patients deal with Cancer. We have come a long way in recent years.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Second Opinions

Tell Your Doctor if you want to get a Second Opinion. Most doctors know the value of Second Opinion. They are not offended when patients seek one. They may even be able to recommend another doctor. Also consider searching for the Find Cancer Doctor database from Cancer. Net. It has a list of ASCO members in the United States and abroad who have made their contact information public. Local hospitals, Medical clinics, or cancer centers Medical associations that offer searchable databases of doctors: American Board of Medical Specialties, American Medical Association, American College of Surgeons Medicare. Gov offers a searchable database of doctors who accept Medicare friends and family members. Cancer organizations and patient advocate groups, once you find another doctor, ask about his or her area of specialty and credentials. This includes training, experience, and Board certification in their specialty.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Know your options

When you are learning about cancer and evaluating what cancer treatment to undergo, it's important to understand your options, and the benefits and risks that each offers. Generally, cancer patients receive one of three types of cancer treatment: surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy. It's also possible to receive a combination of any of those three types, in hopes of increasing the odds of getting rid of cancer cells. If the tumor is large and easy to remove, surgical treatment might be the best option. The decision to cut is based on the type of cancer, its stage, and where the tumor is locate. Surgery can be effective at removing a single mass or tumor, but surgeons ca remove cancer that has spread and affected multiple areas of the body. Another consideration: It can also take time to heal from large incision following surgery, and there are usual surgical risks of excessive bleeding and infection. Chemotherapy involves use of drugs that destroy cancer cells. While it is a very effective method of ridding the body of cancer, particularly types of cancer that have spread to more than one location, there are side effects to deal with because healthy cells are also damaged during this form of cancer treatment. Radiation, another method used to destroy cancer cells, can be administered from outside the body or within the body. Radiation can be delivered as streams of energy from X - rays and gamma rays, or can consist of energy from charge particles, such as proton beam radiation. Radiation is not a good option for all types of cancer; It's best for single tumor or mass. With radiation, immediate side effects tend to be less severe than those of chemotherapy. Not everyone benefits from the most well - known forms of cancer treatment. For some types of cancer, other, less commonly used methods may be most effective. These include: biological therapy. Also called immunotherapy, this type of cancer treatment uses drugs that don't directly attack cancer cells, but instead work to promote the body's natural immune response against cancer cells. These drugs make the body better able to defend itself and fight cancer. Right now, biggest drawback is that biological therapy seems most effective against cancers that are still small and in earlier stages. Hormone therapy. Hormones estrogen and testosterone can promote growth of tumors in the breast and prostate, respectively. To fight these types of cancer, drugs that inhibit the effects of those hormones may be given to slow tumor growth. Hormone therapy is only used to treat breast or prostate cancer, and only slows down progression; additional treatment is needed to kill the tumor. Photodynamic therapy. This cancer treatment uses light and drugs that make cancer cells react when exposed to light. Drug, called photosensitizing agent, is administered and absorbed by cells. Once cells are exposed to light, drugs inside them react with oxygen, forming chemicals that destroy cancer cells.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Sources

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

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