Diagnostic tools are tests or procedures that are used to determine if an area is benign or malignant. It may take several of these tests to get a precise diagnosis and this process is critical in creating a personalized care plan for the patient. It is our goal to guide each patient through the process and determine best next steps.
CT scans, which use X-rays to create cross-sectional images of the area of concern.
MRI scans, which use radio waves and strong magnets to create detailed images of soft tissue. Like CT scans, they can produce detailed images of the tissue in the area of concern.
PET scans, which use fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) injected into the body to illuminate cancer cells. It’s also useful in determining if cancer has spread beyond the initial site.
PET/CT scans, which combine the technology of both to give the doctor an even more detailed image.
Hysterectomy – the surgical removal of the uterus. For more advanced forms of cancer, surgery is usually the appropriate option.
Medical Oncology uses chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and targeted drug therapy to focus on specific mutations and to eliminate cancer cells. Chemotherapy is typically part of the treatment for lung cancer. This is because the cancerous cells have usually already spread by the time it is found, so other treatments such as surgery or radiation therapy would not reach all areas of cancer.
Radiation therapy uses powerful energy sources, such as X-rays and protons, to eliminate cancer cells. It might be used to shrink a large cancer before an operation so that it can be removed more easily. When surgery isn’t an option, radiation therapy might be used to relieve symptoms, such as pain. Sometimes radiation is combined with chemotherapy.
Although cancer doesn’t have to define you, the disease changes your life in a number of ways. You’ll have to deal with the immediate and long-term physical effects of treatment, ongoing screening and monitoring, new concerns about staying healthy and a wide range of emotions.
This post-treatment period is called survivorship. While survivorship varies from patient to patient, there are some common concerns that often affect cancer survivors. We encourage you to follow up with your specialist and team for local recommendations regarding survivorship resources and support programs.
The Pap test (or Pap smear) looks for precancers, cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated appropriately.
The HPV test looks for the virus (human papillomavirus) that can cause these cell changes.
Talk with your OB/GYN physician to learn more about when it’s the right time to schedule a screening.