When newly diagnosed with cancer, you might feel that your treatment choices are completely out of your hands. But you often have choices, even with cancer. The disease is treated with one or two different cancer treatment options, and these are influenced by the type of cancer, tumor characteristics, and your personal health factors. Your doctor makes recommendations, but you have an active voice in your healthcare and you’re entitled to communicate your preferences and goals with your doctor.
Most cancer care physicians, like the doctors at the Sarcoma Oncology Center, encourage their patients to participate in their treatment decisions and educate themselves about their illness. Sarcoma Oncology Center is headed up by Dr. Sant Chawla, an esteemed sarcoma specialist who’s internationally known for his innovative work in chemotherapy, with renowned oncologist, Dr. Doris Quon. Many of the Center’s patients are referred to them from renowned medical institutions including Cedars Sinai, M.D. Anderson, UCLA, USC, and Stanford.
Sarcoma Examination and Diagnosis
Sarcoma is a complex disease which is often not diagnosed until it is in an advanced stage. Before treatment can be implemented, thorough diagnostics, physical exam results, and medical history are compiled and analyzed to confirm diagnosis. Dr. Chawla likes his patients to know that the pathology of the tumor is crucial to treatment and requires a biopsy for revealing details, such as tumor size, stage, type, density, and cell origin.
When it’s time to develop a treatment strategy, patients meet with Dr. Chawla or Dr. Quon to discuss diagnosis and treatment specifics as well as providing recommendations. At this time, patients need to communicate their health and lifestyle goals and express concerns and opinions. This way, both doctor and patient can decide together on an optimal treatment plan.
Cancer Treatment Options
Sarcoma often requires integrated methods to eliminate a tumor in different ways. Doctors typically select a combination of modalities, which include one or more of the following:
An effective treatment for sarcoma, chemotherapy can control the spread of the disease into the lungs, vital organs and other parts of the body. It might be used either before or after surgery depending upon tumor behavior.
Radiation could be used to shrink a tumor prior to surgery or afterwards to eliminate any remaining diseased tissue. Radiation therapy sterilizes tumor cells preventing them multiplying and spreading.
Surgery removes a tumor and is often paired with radiation, which first shrinks the tumor. When used in conjunction with chemotherapy, surgery can be performed first or after chemotherapy has minimized cancer spread. It is important to note that the Center’s doctors place limb preservation as one of the top priorities in every surgical procedure. While eliminating cancer is the primary goal, we strongly believe in preserving our patients’ quality of life as well.
Chemotherapy Specialists Can Help You
If you have been diagnosed with sarcoma and would like to consult with a dedicated sarcoma specialist about your treatment options, contact the Sarcoma Oncology Center. The Center’s doctors are internationally known for their expertise in sarcoma care and medically advanced drug therapeutics. Call today at 310-552-9999 to schedule a consultation.
Next, please read about cancer chemotherapy.