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Treatment Types

Treatment depends on the specific type of cancer that has been diagnosed, the stage (including if the cancer has spread or not), and other factors. Many people need more than one type of treatment for their cancer. For example, treatment may include a combination of different drugs plus surgery and/or radiotherapy. This page provides an overview of the main types of treatment and links to pages with more detailed information and Web resources.

* Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy is the treatment of disease by the use of chemical substances, especially by cytotoxic (cell killing) and other drugs. It is a systemic (whole body, including cancer cells that might have spread) treatment. There are many different drugs used to treat cancer...
* Radiotherapy
Radiotherapy uses high-energy particles to destroy or damage cancer cells. It is normally delivered from outside the body ('external beam radiotherapy') but can also be delivered internally within the body (including radioactive implants)...
* Surgery
Surgery may be used to help make a diagnosis (a biopsy involves removing a small sample of tissue for analysis) or as treatment for cancer, where the surgeon removes the tumour and a 'margin' of normal tissue around it...
* Biological Therapies
Biological Therapies use or mimic substances that occur naturally in the body. They may be used to stimulate the immune system to fight cancer, control the growth of cancer cells or to overcome side effects of treatment...
* Stem Cell and Bone Marrow Transplants
Hematopoietic stem cells mature and divide to make new blood cells, essential for life, they are mostly found in bone marrow. Stem cell transplants restore the stem cells when the bone marrow has been destroyed by disease, chemotherapy, or radiation...
* Supportive Care / Side Effects
Supportive therapies may be used to help reduce symptoms and control side effects caused by cancer treatments. The type of side effects depend on the type of treatment and can vary between people...
Other types of treatment:
* Bisphosphonates

Research: new treatments are being developed and refined all the time, these are rigorously tested in the laboratory and then evaluated with specific groups of patients in carefully controlled clinical trials. See: * Clinical Trials

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