What Are Your Cancer Treatment Options?

There are various ways to treat cancer. However, treatment of cancer depends on the type of cancer and how advanced it is. Decisions about the treatment of cancer are personal, and every patient needs to feel comfortable with their choices. Most people don’t know where to start when faced with different options to choose from.

Individual treatment plans are administered according to the type and stage of cancer. It is imperative that you learn as much as you can about your specific diagnosis and ask your doctor questions about the disease. Cancer treatment includes one or a combination of treatments. Your healthcare provider will ensure you receive the appropriate treatment based on the proven protocols. The common treatments for cancer include:

  • Surgery – Surgery is tailored to treat most cancers, and it depends on the part of the body that requires the operation and the tissue to be removed. Depending on the severity and size of the cancer, surgery may be minimally invasive or open.
  • Chemotherapy – Chemotherapy treatment uses medications to treat cancer. The drugs can be administered intravenously or orally. Chemotherapy is considered a systematic therapy because it affects not only the cancer cells but the entire body too. Medications for chemotherapy attack the growing cancer cells, but they can also attack healthy cells that are rapidly growing. When healthy cells are compromised, you become vulnerable to side effects like infection, nausea, fatigue, anemia, and diarrhea.
  • Radiation therapy – Radiation therapy uses high doses of radiation to eradicate cancer cells and shrink tumors.  Radiation therapy may be the only treatment that is required for some people, but most often this type of treatment is used in combination with surgery and chemotherapy.

To make a reasonable decision regarding the treatment, you have to keep in mind the type of cancer you have, its stage, and the available treatment options. Are these treatments likely to work under the circumstances? Let the doctor provide you with educational materials that will supplement your discussions. Also, compare the risks and benefits of different cancer treatments to decide on the treatment that falls within your goals. You can choose the treatment options based on the advantages and disadvantages of each.

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