3 Things to Know About How Cancer Is Treated

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(Newswire.net — June 10, 2021) –Many people know that cancer is a serious health problem, and it can be difficult to find out what you should do if someone in your life has been diagnosed with cancer. One of the most important things to know about how cancer is treated is that there are many different types of treatments for different cancers.

This article will discuss three specific cancer treatment options: surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. 

Surgery to Treat Cancer

Cancerous tumors can often be surgically removed. Additionally, surgery is used to diagnose cancer and repair bone or tissue damage caused by the tumor. The most common types of surgeries for treating cancer are:

  • Lumpectomy (Removing a small section of the breast).
  • Mastectomy (removal of the entire breast).
  • Prostatectomy (removal of all or part of the prostate).

Cancer surgery can often be performed in two ways: open surgery and minimally invasive. Open surgery is when the surgeon cuts through the skin with a scalpel blade to remove or repair tissue. At the same time, minimally invasive procedures involve inserting thin tubes called endoscopes into small incisions on your body.

Chemotherapy Options for Cancer Treatment

Chemotherapy drugs target fast-growing cells without distinguishing normal from abnormal cells. These drugs do not cure cancers, but they may help reduce symptoms such as pain, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, etc. if given in a time before it spreads too far around the body.

Chemotherapy, often referred to as chemo, can lead to cancer remission, but it also has several side effects, including nausea, hair loss, and fatigue. Studies show that chemotherapy does not work well for some tumors because they are resistant to drugs used during treatment which means other treatments may be needed after this option has been explored.

With these side effects in mind, doctors will discuss different options with you based on what type of cancer you currently have and how advanced it is.

Radiation Therapy for Cancer

Radiation therapy sometimes called radiation treatment or RT for short, is a type of cancer treatment that uses high-energy x-rays to destroy malignant cells. This may be used as the primary form of cancer control, and it also boosts the effectiveness of other treatments like chemotherapy. 

Treatment: Chemotherapy vs. Radiation Therapy

Chemotherapy is often given in cycles where each cycle consists of one week on drugs followed by three weeks off drugs, during which time your body starts to recover from the side effects caused by chemo medication.

Radiation therapy can take one hour per day, five days per week, for six to eight weeks if you have early-stage breast cancer, but this will depend on what your doctor feels are the best options based on how advanced the disease is and how much it has spread. 

Radiation Treatment vs. Surgery

Radiation treatment may be the best option for localized cancer patients that can’t be removed by surgery. There are also potential side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy, such as hair loss, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.

Radiation can target a specific area without harming other organs in your body like chemo medication does, which makes it the preferred method if you have staged one through three breast cancer or prostate cancer.

For more advanced cancers, though, where surgical removal isn’t an option, then this form of treatment will do nothing to slow down metastatic disease progression since they’re not localizing on tumors but throughout your entire system.

You will want to consult with your doctor before deciding on a course of treatment for cancer.