When it comes to the fight against cancer, information can be a very powerful tool. If you were recently diagnosed with cancer, one of the first things you should do is get informed about your condition and treatment options. And one of the best ways to do so is by asking your doctor or oncologist the below questions.
“What type of cancer do I have?”
Cancer is the general name for a disease in which abnormal cells divide uncontrollably. With more than 200 known types of cancer existing today, it’s important to understand exactly which type of cancer you have.
“What stage is my cancer?”
Stages refer to how severe your cancer is or how far it has progressed. Stages of cancer are traditionally:
- Stage 0: You don’t currently have cancer, however abnormal cells were found and they have the potential to cause cancer in the future.
- Stage 1: The cancer is small and isolated to just one area.
- Stage 2 & 3: The cancer is beginning to grow and spread to nearby tissue.
- Stage 4: Also known as advanced-stage cancer, this means that the cancer has spread to several areas of the body.
“Where is my cancer located?”
Typically, cancers are named after where they’re located in the body. However, a person can be diagnosed with skin cancer and only have cancerous cells found in a small area of skin on their body. It’s also possible for cancer cells to travel throughout the body, after originating in one area.
“What are my treatment options?”
At Beverly Oncology, we offer several types of treatments, including:
- Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy involves emitting X-ray energy to cancerous areas of the body. By changing the mutated, unhealthy gene, radiation can prevent it from multiplying.
- Rotating Gamma Technology: The Rotating Gamma System® (RGS) Vertex360™ performs noninvasive brain surgery safely and effectively. This radiosurgery device has radioactive sources that rotate and circle the head during treatment, accurately targeting tumors and lesions while preserving the surrounding, healthy tissue.
- Brachytherapy: This is the direct, internal application of a small radiation source to the tissues via specialized catheters, which are placed in a natural cavity or the tumor itself.
“What are the side effects of that treatment?”
Cancer is an aggressive disease, so it often requires an aggressive treatment plan. Side effects will vary depending on the treatment plan you choose. However, they typically range from minimal to severe and include appetite and weight loss, swelling, fatigue, hair loss, lymphedema, nausea and vomiting, insomnia, and changes in skin and nail health.
Beverly Oncology & Imaging offers state-of-the-art medical technology with greater convenience than hospitals can offer. We are leaders in our field, using cutting-edge technology like Rotating Gamma Technology™,External Beam therapy, and brachytherapy. Contact us today to discuss treatment options or to make an appointment.