Cancer is treated in several ways, depending on each person′s medical condition and type of cancer. Physicians plan treatments based on several key factors, such as the type and stage of the cancer, as well as the person′s age, health and lifestyle. If you have been diagnosed with cancer, it is important for you to know that you play an important role in the treatment process. Some of the treatments and procedures are listed below:
The hallmark of the treatment process in Dharamshila Narayana Superspeciality Hospital (A Unit of Dharamshila Cancer Foundation and Research Centre) is that no patient treatment except emergency treatment is started without a discussion of the case and treatment plan in the Tumour Board. Every cancer patient registered in this hospital goes through case presentation and discussion in tumour board, consisting of senior consultants from various disciplines of oncology (diagnostic and therapeutic). The experts share and exchange views based on the clinical findings of the primary consultant, stage at presentation and various other criteria before the most suitable and acceptable management plan, based on National and International standard protocols (NCCN guidelines) is evolved. Read More...
There is a wide array of methods used to diagnose cancer. These tests are best conducted by an expert at our cancer centers. After the diagnosis, a second opinion from an expert is strongly recommended. Some types of cancer, particularly lymphomas, can be hard to classify. Accurate identification of cancer allows our oncologists to choose the most effective treatment for you. Read More...
Radiation therapy is a non-invasive modality of cancer treatment required by 50 - 60% of patients. It is least traumatic and most cost effective. It can be given alone as well as concomitantly with surgery / chemotherapy. The radiation therapy has evolved in the last decade with innumerable innovations in delivering safe, efficient and quality radiation with minimal dose and in shortest time by using the V-MAT technology. It is usually given by external beam (Linear Accelerators) or internally by using Brachytherapy. Before radiation therapy is started, a detailed custom made treatment planning is done for each and every patient.
Surgery is the oldest form of cancer treatment and used in several ways to help cancer patients. It plays an important role in diagnosing, staging, and supporting cancer treatment.
Having surgery for cancer is different for every patient, depending on the type of surgery, the type of cancer, and the patient′s health. For some people, surgery is a major medical procedure with life-changing side effects. For others, surgery is quick and has few side effects.
Several types of surgery are helpful to people with cancer. Some surgeries are used in combination with other types of treatment. The following is a list of these surgeries with a brief explanation of their goals:
Curative Surgery - Curative surgery removes the cancerous tumor or growth from the body. Surgeons use curative surgery when the cancer tumor is local to a specific area of the body. This type of treatment is often considered the primary treatment. However, other types of cancer treatments, such as radiation, may be used before or after the surgery.
Preventive Surgery - Preventive surgery is used to remove tissue that does not contain cancer cells, but may develop into a malignant tumor. For example, polyps in the colon may be considered precancer tissue and preventive surgery may be performed to remove them.
Diagnostic Surgery - Diagnostic surgery helps to determine whether cells are cancerous. Diagnostic surgery is used to remove a tissue sample for testing and evaluation (in a laboratory by a pathologist). The tissue samples help to confirm a diagnosis, identify the type of cancer, or determine the stage of the cancer.
Staging Surgery - Staging surgery works to uncover the extent of cancer, or the extent of the disease in the body. Laparoscopy (a viewing tube with a lens or camera is inserted through a small incision to examine the inside of the body and to remove tissue samples) is an example of a surgical staging procedure.
Palliative Surgery - Palliative surgery is used to treat cancer at advanced stages. It does not work to cure cancer, but to relieve discomfort or to correct other problems cancer or cancer treatment may have created.
Supportive Surgery - Supportive surgery is similar to palliative surgery because it does not work to cure cancer. Instead, it helps other cancer treatments work effectively. An example of supportive surgery is the insertion of a catheter to help with chemotherapy.
Restorative Surgery - Restorative surgery is sometimes used as a follow-up to curative or other surgeries to change or restore a person’s appearance or the function of a body part. For example, women with breast cancer sometimes need breast reconstruction surgery to restore the physical shape of the affected breast(s). Curative surgery for oral cancer can cause a change in the shape and appearance of a person’s mouth. Restorative surgery may be performed to address these effects.
Medical oncologists are trained exclusively to plan and manage chemotherapies and their side effects. Chemotherapies can be Normal and High Dose, including Dose–intense and Dose–dense; Infusional multiple and single drug; Bolus Chemotherapies; Intra-arterial chemotherapy; Targeted Therapies; Immunotherapy / Biological Therapies; Hormonal Therapies; Neutropenic Care; Nutritional Therapy; Palliative and Terminal Supportive Care; Blood transfusion and I/V fluids etc. The radiotherapists and surgeons are not trained to perform chemotherapies.
When a cure is not possible, palliative care is given until the end of life in order to assure the best quality of life for the patient even if he cannot be treated. During this phase, psychological support for the patient and his family is essential. The palliative care oncology department at DNSH supports all kinds of post-operative, post-chemo and post-radiation issues and is adept at dealing with the medical, physiological and psychological issues of cancer care treatments.