Being diagnosed with cancer can be overwhelming. If treatment is an option, there are many things to consider, including the type of cancer, what stage it is in, and what is available through your health insurance in your area. Five of the most common cancers in men include prostate cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer, bladder cancer and Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. These cancers can be treated through traditional or alternative methods, and here are a few options to consider:
Different types of surgeries are available to prevent or treat cancer. If your doctor suspects you have cells that could become cancerous, he may suggest you have the tissues or organ in that area of your body removed just to be safe. Minor surgeries like biopsies, where a skin or tissue sample is removed from the body, help doctors determine if you have cancer. Staging surgeries are conducted to explore and determine what stage the cancer is in and if it has spread to another part of the body. Surgery can also be done to remove the cancer already established in your body.
Chemotherapy helps treat cancer using drugs and is typically given in liquid form through an IV (intravenous) or in pill form. The amount of chemotherapy a patient needs varies greatly depending on the type of cancer, how much it has spread, and how one responds to the treatment. The chemo drugs travel through the body, killing cancer cells. Chemotherapy also helps cancer from spreading through the rest of the body, as well as slowing the growth of cancer. According to Mayo Clinic, chemotherapy can kill cancer on its own, and many times this treatment is paired with another form of treatment such as radiation therapy.
Radiation therapy involves using high doses of radiation, or electromagnetic waves, to treat cancer. Radiation therapy prevents cancerous cells from growing. Unlike chemotherapy, radiation only treats cancer tumors in a single location and does not treat the whole body. Frequency and duration of radiation treatment varies depending on the type and strength of cancer.
Stem Cell Transplant
When cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy are performed, stem cells in bone marrow are often destroyed and need to be replaced. This is where stem cell treatments come in. Stem cells are transplanted into cancer patients at the source, like bone marrow, from donors. Stem cell transplants help the body regain a proper amount of blood cells, which helps the body stay healthy and fight cancer.
There are many types of alternative cancer treatment options available. Common alternative cancer treatments include exercise, massage therapy, and aromatherapy. There are also surgical alternatives available, like Cyberknife, where high doses of pin-point radiation are used to remove cancerous and non-cancerous tumors.
There is no set treatment plan for cancer. Patients are encouraged to seek out different treatments that best fit their type and stage of cancer, as well as consider alternative treatments. Although being diagnosed with cancer is frightening, there are many ways to obtain treatment.