Treatment Types

The treatment plan depends mainly on the type of cancer and the stage of the disease. Doctors also consider the patient’s age and general health. Often, the goal of treatment is to cure the cancer. In other cases, the goal is to control the disease or to reduce symptoms for as long as possible. The treatment plan may change over time.

Your doctor can describe your treatment choices and the expected results. You and your doctor can work together to decide on a treatment plan that is best for you.

Laser Treatment

Laser therapy uses high-intensity light to treat cancer and other illnesses. Lasers can be used to shrink or destroy tumors or precancerous growths. Lasers are most commonly used to treat superficial cancers (cancers on the surface of the body or the lining of internal organs) such as basal cell skin cancer and the very early stages of some cancers, such as cervical, penile, vaginal, vulvar, and non-small cell lung cancer.

Lasers also may be used to relieve certain symptoms of cancer, such as bleeding or obstruction. For example, lasers can be used to shrink or destroy a tumor that is blocking a patient’s trachea (windpipe) or esophagus. Lasers also can be used to remove colon polyps or tumors that are blocking the colon or stomach.

Laser therapy can be used alone, but most often it is combined with other treatments, such as surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy. In addition, lasers can seal nerve endings to reduce pain after surgery and seal lymph vessels to reduce swelling and limit the spread of tumor cells. .

  • Laser light can be used to remove cancer or precancerous growths or to relieve symptoms of cancer. It is used most often to treat cancers on the surface of the body or the lining of internal organs.
  • Laser therapy is often given through a thin tube called an endoscope, which can be inserted in openings in the body to treat cancer or precancerous growths inside the trachea (windpipe), esophagus, stomach, or colon.
  • Laser therapy causes less bleeding and damage to normal tissue than standard surgical tools do, and there is a lower risk of infection.
  • However, the effects of laser surgery may not be permanent, so the surgery may have to be repeated.

Recommended Reading

References:

MD Anderson Glossary of Cancer Terms. Houston, TX: MD Anderson. Retrieved August 15, 2011 from http://www.mdanderson.org/patient-and-cancer-information/cancer-information/glossary-of-cancer-terms/l.html

National Institute of Health. Lasers. Retrieved September 13, 2011 from http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Therapy/lasers

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Did You Know

Building awareness of childhood cancer is critical to funding and finding a cure. To help, please consider sharing teamconnor.org on your Facebook.

Today, 46 children will be diagnosed with cancer.  Seven will lose their battle..

Did you know September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month!.

Every day in America, approximately 46 children are diagnosed with cancer..

Childhood cancer does not discriminate, sparing no ethnic group, socio-economic class, or geographic region..

Rhabdomyosarcoma is the most common soft tissue sarcoma in children, accounting for about 3% of childhood cancers..

On average, 1 in every 4 elementary schools has a child with cancer. .

About one-third of childhood cancers are leukemias..

Childhood cancer survival rates in the United States have increased from less than 20% in the 1960s to almost 80% today..

Cancer kills more children each year than Asthma, Cystic Fibrosis, Diabetes, and Pediatric AIDS combined. .

Childhood cancer is not one disease entity, but rather a spectrum of different malignancies. Cancers found in children are biologically different from those seen in adults. .

1 in 300 children will develop cancer before age 20. .

Neuroblastoma is the most common extra cranial solid tumor cancer in children. .

Today, up to 75% of the children with cancer can be cured, yet, some forms of childhood cancers have proven so resistant to treatment that, in spite of research, a cure is illusive..

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