Different doctors specialize in various areas of cancer care. You may encounter a general surgeon, oncologist, medical oncologist, pathologist, and radiologist. These professionals work together to create treatment plans for you or your loved one. This multidisciplinary team uses individual professional knowledge to help you recover from breast cancer. The treatment options recommended by the doctor depend on the size of the tumor, other underlying conditions, your age, and your lifestyle. This article explores a few breast cancer treatment options that your multidisciplinary team may recommend.
Your multidisciplinary team may recommend lumpectomy. This procedure is the removal of the tumor and a small section of the surrounding tissue. Most of the breast tissue remains after this procedure. This type of surgery may be the first of a series of treatment options. For example, the doctors may follow up the surgery with radiation therapy. Lumpectomy is a breast-conserving surgery and is appropriate for people who have been newly diagnosed with breast cancer. The procedure also depends on the type of gene mutation in your breast.
Another surgical option for breast cancer treatment is mastectomy. This procedure involves removing the entire breast. The doctors may perform a skin-sparing mastectomy or one that preserves your nipples. These sparing versions of the process are suitable for people with specific genetic mutations and women with moderate breast cancer mutations. The doctors examine the size of your tumor and determine which surgical option is appropriate for treatment.
Radiation therapy is a valuable alternative for breast cancer almost at every stage. This method is essential in preventing the recurrence of breast cancer after surgery. Radiation therapy is also critical for easing the symptoms caused by cancer that has spread to other body parts. If the doctor performs a breast-conserving surgery or lumpectomy, they may also use radiation therapy to destroy the remaining cancer cells. The addition of radiation therapy also helps reduce the risk of cancer returning after surgery. Radiation therapy also varies depending on the size of the tumor. Doctors may recommend whole breast radiation or radiation of part of the breast. Radiation therapy has high success rates in cancer treatment, and you should feel comfortable exploring this treatment option.
Your doctor may also recommend chemotherapy. This procedure involves the use of drugs to kill cancer cells. Cancer cells grow and subdivide faster than healthy body cells. Therefore, medications used in chemotherapy have a more significant impact on cancer cells than normal cells. However, these drugs are strong, and they may have adverse effects on healthy cells after a while. Chemotherapy is suitable before surgery and radiation therapy (neoadjuvant chemotherapy). This treatment helps shrink the tumor before the surgical procedure or radiation therapy. Adjuvant chemotherapy performed after surgery or radiation therapy helps destroy the remaining tumor. Doctors may also recommend chemotherapy for recurrent breast cancer or metastasized cancer.
New Forms of Breast Cancer Treatment
Today, doctors recommend new forms of breast cancer treatment depending on the circumstances. One such method is immunotherapy which involves the use of the immune system to attack cancer cells. Doctors may also use interventional radiology that employs minimally invasive methods such as catheters and needles. These techniques provide alternatives to surgery and have a high success rate.
Standard breast cancer treatment methods include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and new forms of breast cancer treatment.Share