Vaginal Cancer Treatment and Cure

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Vaginal cancer treatment should start soon after it has been detected. A treatment however would depend on the age of the woman, severity of symptoms or any past treatment the patient has had. As it is the vaginal cancer is hard to detect in the early stages, therefore once it's confirmed to be vaginal cancer the treatment should start at once. However, treatment would defer as per individual conditions. The diagnosis would make the doctor decide the best suitable treatment. The patient should speak to the doctor about all her doubts, worries and apprehensions and decide the process ahead. Some of the treatments a doctor may suggest depending on individual conditions are mentioned below:

  • Radiation therapy: A patient with vaginal cancer may be required to be administered with radiation therapy depending on the type and stage of the cancer. Radiation therapy uses high energy beams aimed at the area that is affected and kills off the remaining cancerous cells. There are two types of radiation therapy that can be applied to treat a woman with vaginal cancer
    1. Internal radiation therapy: In case of internal radiation therapy some radiation substance is put into the cancer in the patient's body or near it by using a wire or needle etc

    2. External radiation therapy: Radiation therapy applied externally uses the high energy beams to aim at the cancer from outside the area concerned. Radiation therapy is known to stop cancerous cells from growing further and destroy them

    • Surgery: A woman with vaginal cancer might have to go through surgery if need be. Vaginal cancer surgery is usually done to remove the entire tumor. However, this depends on the size, stage etc of the tumor. Following such factors a patient might have to go through any of the below mentioned surgery:

      1. Lymphadenectomy: This is also called lymph node dissection and that should make things pretty apparent that in this surgical process lymph nodes are removed and put under microscope to check for any possible traces of cancer. In such surgery if the cancer resides in the upper vagina lymph nodes from pelvic region would be removed and checked, similarly if cancer is found in the lower part of vagina lymph nodes from the groin area would be taken out for verification

      2. Laser surgery: A laser surgery uses narrow laser beam that helps remove the cancer by burning off skin

      3. Vaginectomy: This surgery is done with the purpose of removing the vagina completely or in parts

      4. Excision: This surgery is done to remove the tumor as well as some healthy tissue from the vagina. A plastic surgeon might be able to repair the vagina by taking skin from other areas of the body

      5. Total hysterectomy: In this surgery the uterus is removed from the body. In case uterus along with cervix is removed from the abdomen through a large cut, it's known as total hysterectomy

    • Chemotherapy: A woman having to undergo Chemotherapy would suggest that the cancer has reached an advanced state and it depends on the stage and type of vaginal cancer that the patient has reached. Chemotherapy is applied to kill and stop the cancerous cells from further growing. In case of vaginal cancer chemotherapy is either given orally or intravenously. Intravenous chemotherapy is injected directly into the muscle or vein from where it travels to bloodstream and starts to affect the cancerous cells throughout the body wherever they are.

    • Pelvic Exenteration: Vagina, ovary, lymph nodes etc are removed through this surgery

    Whatever stage the patient might have reached one cannot afford to delay vaginal cancer treatment. The best suitable treatment is recommended by the physician depending upon individual condition and any negligence on the part of the patient in obeying them is what might prove more dangerous. The patient should also better approach a doctor with good practice and knowledge about vaginal cancer.

    However, if a patient comes late when it's already too late and things have moved on to an advanced stage even the doctor might be left with only a few options. And in case of a casualty he can't entirely be blamed. It is hoped that once the scientists make necessary breakthrough regarding the cause of this disease it would be far easy to treat it. Many clinical trials are also underway, it's expected that it would improve the current available options and find information to come up with better and new treatment. An enhanced treatment is supposed to give fillip to patient's survival chance. But prevention of vaginal cancer is always better than cure.

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