If you have been diagnosed with cancer, you may wonder whether or not surgery can be used to treat your condition. Here is a bit of information about the use of surgery in the treatment of cancer.
What Roles Do Surgical Procedures Play When It Comes to Cancer?
A doctor may prescribe surgery for multiple reasons when it comes to cancer. A surgical procedure may be used to help avoid or diagnose the condition. Additionally, it may be used in the treatment of the disease.
Surgery as a Diagnostic Tool
The doctor may perform a surgical procedure called a biopsy to obtain a sample of the patient's tissue. This sample is reviewed by a lab to confirm or deny the presence of cancer.
Surgery to Explore the Area Around a Tumor
A doctor may use exploratory surgery to determine the extent of the spread of cancer. During the procedure, the surgeon may examine areas around a known tumor to determine whether or not it has metastasized. In some instances, cancer may spread to adjacent organs or to the lymph nodes.
Exploratory surgery provides a physician with important information that will help determine the best treatment plan for your condition.
Surgery to Remove Cancer Fully
If the cancer is localized and can be safely removed, cancer removal surgery may be performed. If the doctor is able to remove all of the cancerous tissue, the surgery can help cure the patient. Still, additional treatments, such as radiation therapy or chemotherapy, may be applied.
Surgery to Partially Remove Cancer
Sometimes, the physician may need to reduce the size of a large tumor, even though the entire tumor cannot be safely removed. Large tumors may place undue pressure on nearby organs. Nevertheless, the removal of the entire growth could result in too much tissue damage. Once the surgeon has removed the bulk of a tumor, the remaining portions may be treatable using chemotherapy or radiation treatments.
Surgery to Alleviate Discomfort
Palliative surgical procedures are used to help cancer patients feel more comfortable. This type of surgical treatment is often reserved for people with an advanced stage of the disease.
Surgery to Reconstruct Areas Affected by Cancer
Sometimes, the removal of cancerous tissue can impact the appearance and functionality of the body. Reconstructive surgery is available to help restore the look of an area of the body. Additionally, it can help a damaged organ or area of the body function properly again.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer and would like to determine whether or not a surgical procedure could be used to treat your condition, schedule a consultation with a cancer physician in your local area. They can provide more information regarding cancer supported treatments.