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Your Cancer Treatment is Unique to You and Here is Why

Cancer has had few treatment options in the past but things are changing with new advancements in research and technology. This means that patients get more customized treatment plans that may be different for each patient. Patients are likely to receive opinions and suggestions from people close to them about the right approach to take but many times these suggestions are based on another cancer patient’s journey.

It is essential to note that treatment plans are not a ‘one size fits all’ affair because doctors take several things into consideration before making recommendations. Some of the factors doctors look at include:

  • Test results – Scans and imaging tests give a picture of the tumor. Pathology tests glean insight from tissue samples, helping to pinpoint where the cancer started first. Genetic testing shows whether a patient is likely to inherit certain cancers and how gene mutations will affect the response to cancer treatment. The location and stage the cancer is in also matters.
  • A patient’s health and general wellness. This includes blood count and other illnesses. Some diseases can rule out specific treatment plans based on the patient’s health. If you had cancer before and underwent treatment, the doctor must look at how it responded to medication.
  • Whether clinical trials are available for that particular type of cancer. It also depends on the patient’s goals and intentions for getting treatment.

With these factors thoroughly examined, doctors can then give the appropriate treatment plan for a patient. It may involve several tests and lots of analysis but from this they should be able to give direction.

Patients should also express their intentions from the beginning. Some patients only want to manage the symptoms arising from cancer, others want a cure, while others want to prevent it from spreading further. The approaches to these different scenarios allow patients to make a choice on their treatment based on the results.      

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