Decades ago, we may have struggled to understand cancer. But today, there are several types of treatment options to help you manage this disease better. While some people will only have one kind of treatment, others will require a combination of these treatments. Understanding your options can help you feel more in control and give you a starting point to ask your doctor the right kinds of questions when deciding a course of action.
Surgery – Here, a surgeon removes cancerous masses from your body.
Radiation Therapy – This type of cancer treatment involves high doses of radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.
Chemotherapy – Chemotherapy makes use of drugs to kill cancerous cells.
Immunotherapy – This type of cancer treatment helps build up your immune system to fight cancer.
Precision Medicine – Here, your team of doctors begins by understanding the disease’s genetic makeup. Genetic changes in cancer are identified and used to select the most effective treatment routes.
Hormone Therapy – Hormone therapy is a treatment that slows or stops the growth of breast and prostate cancers that use hormones to grow. Make sure to study the types of hormone therapy and the side effects that may happen, before going in for this treatment.
Targeted Therapy – This form of treatment targets changes in the cancer cells that help them grow, divide, and spread.
Stem Cell Transplant – Since many cancer treatments are often done in tandem, patients are often left with destroyed sets of blood-forming stem cells. Stem cell transplants are commonly suggested to restore the stem cell counts in patients who have undergone very high doses of chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
Biomarker Testing – The treatment option looks for genes, proteins, and other substances called biomarkers or tumor markers to get more detailed information about the cancer. It also helps doctors to select the best route for treatment more quickly.
Finally, there are many different approaches to treating cancer. Much of which route your doctor will choose will depend on what type of cancer you are dealing with, how advanced it is, what treatment options are available, and your treatment goals.