Being diagnosed with colorectal cancer leads to development of a treatment plan. You face choices in your treatment and need to weigh those options for their benefits, risks and side effects.
Healthcare professionals use several treatments for colorectal cancer. Which treatment fits your health needs depend on your cancer’s stage and type.
Local treatments, or local therapies, treat your tumor without affecting other parts of your body. These types of local therapies for colorectal cancer include:
Systemic treatments help colorectal cancer through use of drugs. You take these drugs orally or through your bloodstream. These treatments are called systemic because they travel to cancer cells anywhere in your body. Systemic treatments include:
A colorectal cancer treatment team often includes multiple types of doctors. These doctors include:
A well-rounded cancer treatment team also includes:
Many factors determine which professionals participate in your treatment plan. These factors include your health condition, medical history, cancer type, cancer stage, support system and other individual needs.
To make the best possible decisions for your best health after colorectal cancer diagnosis, you must consider your treatment goals, options, benefits, risks and side effects. Your doctors and other healthcare professionals work with you to help you make the right decisions for your individual needs. During this process, be sure to ask questions about things you are unsure of or things you do not understand.
Never fear gaining a second opinion about your colorectal cancer and treatment options. A second opinion naturally provides more information and helps you feel confident in your treatment decisions. Doctors understand your need for several viewpoints and to gain a second opinion about your diagnosis and options.