Cancer is a severe illness that can be treated in various ways. The most common treatments are surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Other options include targeted therapy, immunotherapy, laser, and hormonal therapy. Depending on the type and stage of cancer, your general health status, and your preferences, your doctor may recommend one or a combination of treatments. Chemotherapy is one of the most common types of cancer treatment.
It works by targeting and destroying cancer cells while leaving healthy cells unharmed. However, it can cause side effects such as nausea, fatigue, hair loss, etc. Learn how chemotherapy works against cancer, why it causes side effects, and how it is used with other cancer treatments. Hormone therapy is another treatment that slows or stops the growth of breast and prostate cancers that use hormones to grow. Together, you and your doctor can evaluate the benefits and risks of each cancer treatment to determine which one is best for you. Targeted therapy is a type of cancer treatment focusing on changes in cancer cells that help them grow, divide, and spread.
Neoadjuvant therapy is similar, but treatments are used before primary treatment to make the treatment easier or more effective. Stem cell and bone marrow transplants are sometimes used to treat types of cancer, such as leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma. Learn about the types of transplants, the side effects that may occur, and how to stem cell transplants are used to treat cancer. Palliative treatments can help relieve the side effects of treatment or signs and symptoms caused by cancer. Some treatments may be given to reduce the side effects of other treatments and make you more comfortable. Advances in cancer treatment are taking place every day at MD Anderson. Learn more about the clinical trial process and view a list of current clinical trials at MD Anderson.
The goal of cancer treatment is to achieve a cure for cancer, allowing you to live a normal life. If you work in the medical field are around radiation, make sure you always wear a dosimeter badge.