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Interactive Health Library

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Cancer Institute

Cancer Treatments

Cancer Treatment Resource Center

When you are diagnosed with cancer, a cancer specialist (oncologist) will provide you with the cancer treatment option.  The best treatment plan will be based on the type of cancer, how far it has spread, and other important factors individualized to your diagnosis. 

There are standard treatment options available: surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, cellular transplantation, and complementary and alternative integrated therapy.  The WPAHS offers expertise in each of these treatments with multidisciplinary team evaluating each individual diagnosis. 

For the most up to date information on these treatment modalities and options, please click on the following links for more detailed resources.

Cellular Transplant Resource Center

Bone Marrow and Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplant

This document will give you an overview of bone marrow transplants and other types of stem cell transplants that are used to treat cancer.

 

Chemotherapy Resource Area

Chemotherapy is the use of anti-cancer drugs to treat cancerous cells. Chemotherapy reaches all parts of the body, not just the cancer cells. It may also be used in combination with surgery and radiation.

Chemotherapy

This American Cancer Society site provides general information to understand chemotherapy, what it is and how it works.

Chemotherapy Principles

This American Cancer Society site provides more detailed information on this treatment with additional resources.

Understanding Chemotherapy – Guide

This is a guide for patients and families on chemotherapy addressing common questions on the treatment and side effects.  

Oral Chemotherapy

This site presents general information on taking chemotherapy by mouth.

Radiation Resource Area

Radiation therapy uses a special energy called ionizing radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation therapy injures or destroys cells in the area being treated. The goal of radiation therapy is to damage as many cancer cells as possible while minimizing effect and exposure to healthy tissues.

Radiation Therapy

This American Cancer Society site provides general information to understand radiation therapy, how it is used, and some of the common side effects.

Understanding Radiation Therapy- Guide

This American Cancer Society site provides more detailed information on this treatment with additional resources.

 

Surgery Resource Center

Surgery can be used to diagnose, stage, and treat cancer.  Surgery is done to remove tumors or cancerous tissue when possible.  It is often used with radiation and/or chemotherapy.  It may also be used to relieve pain and lessen discomfort.

Surgery

The American Cancer Society provides detailed information on surgical options and types as well as additional resources and sites for more information.  

 

Targeted Therapy Resource Area

Targeted therapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses drugs or other substances to identify and attack cancer cells while doing little damage to normal cells. These therapies attack the cancer cells' inner workings -- the programming that makes them different from normal, healthy cells. Each type of targeted therapy works differently, but all alter the way a cancer cell grows, divides, repairs itself, or interacts with other cells.

Targeted Therapy

This American Cancer Society site provides general information to understand targeted therapy, what it is and how it works.

Immunotherapy

This site discusses another type of targeted therapy, called immunotherapy or biotherapy. Biologic therapy is a type of anticancer therapy which utilizes natural body proteins and their functions to fight cancer. Immunotherapy is a treatment that uses certain parts of the immune system to fight disease, including cancer.

Photodynamic Therapy

Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a treatment that uses drugs, called photosensitizing agents, along with light to kill cancer cells. The drugs only work after they have been activated or "turned on" by certain kinds of light.

Antiangiogenesis Therapy

Anti-angiogenesis uses drugs or other substances to stop tumors from making new blood vessels. This site discusses how the treatment works and the side effects.

Gene Therapy

Gene therapy involves inserting genetic material (DNA or RNA) into cells to restore a missing function or to give the cells a new function. Because missing or damaged genes cause certain diseases such as cancer, it makes sense to try to treat these diseases by adding the missing gene(s) or fixing those that are damaged. This site explains gene therapy in more detail with additional resources.

 

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