Surgery is a primary treatment method for many types of solid tumors, especially when the cancer has not spread (metastasized) to other parts of your body. This involves surgical removal of all or part of your tumor.
- Surgery is rarely used as the only treatment method. It is often preceded by radiation or chemotherapy, with the intent of shrinking your tumor; or followed by radiation or chemotherapy, to destroy any remaining cancer cells and reduce the risk of reoccurrence.The type of surgery you may have will depend on your type of cancer, the location of your tumor, its size and other factors.
- Surgery also plays an important role in the diagnosis of your cancer. Often, cancer can only be correctly identified when cells are viewed under a microscope or tested in a laboratory. This is done through a procedure called a biopsy that takes a small sample of tissue to examine. It may be done under general anesthesia or, as in the case of a bone marrow biopsy, with little or no medication.
- Additionally, central lines (Broviacs, Medi-ports, etc.) are surgically implanted, either under local or general anesthesia.
Surgical methods have improved over the years reducing the potential impact to your healthy tissue as well as minimizing the potential side effects and reducing risks. Talk with your medical team about treatment options, including various surgical methods. Go to Body Issues to learn more about how to manage the side effects of surgery.