Esophageal cancer treatment may vary depending on the stage of cancer. Treatment may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy.
After a person receives an esophageal cancer diagnosis, their doctor can recommend the most appropriate treatment plan for treating cancer. This is typically based on the stage of cancer, the type of cancerous cells, and the overall health of the individual.
This article looks at the main types of treatment for esophageal cancer.
Doctors may also recommend undergoing surgery to remove lymph nodes where the cancer has spread to.
Doctors may recommend chemotherapy at different stages.
Neoadjuvant chemotherapy refers to chemotherapy that doctors may give to try and reduce the size of the tumor so that they can remove it more easily during surgery.
This can also reduce the risk of cancer coming back after its surgical removal and improve the outlook of the individual.
Doctors may recommend undergoing adjuvant chemotherapy, which is chemotherapy after the surgery, to remove any cancerous cells that may remain or that were too small for imaging tests to detect.
Doctors often recommend adjuvant chemotherapy alongside radiation therapy.
Advanced-stage esophageal cancer
Chemotherapy may help treat cancer that has spread to other organs during the more advanced stages of esophageal cancer. Chemotherapy can also help shrink tumors and reduce the symptoms of cancer.
Chemotherapy may help people who cannot undergo surgery live longer. It may also help slow down cancer progression.
Radiation therapy uses high intensity radiation that can destroy cancerous cells. This procedure is also known as external beam radiation therapy (EBRT). The process is
Doctors can also use radiation therapy to shrink tumors before surgically removing them or
In some cases, doctors may use another type of procedure called internal radiation therapy, or brachytherapy. Its aim is mainly to reduce esophageal cancer symptoms, such as difficulty swallowing, as this procedure may reduce the size of the tumors in the esophagus.
Chemoradiation is a type of treatment in which a person receives a
Doctors may recommend targeted therapy to people with an advanced stage of esophageal cancer or to those whose cancer did not respond to other types of treatment. Targeted therapy is often given in combination with chemotherapy.
Cancer cells typically produce proteins that make it difficult for the human immune system to recognize them. Immunotherapy typically
The treatment the doctor may recommend to a person with esophageal cancer
In its early stages, it may be possible to surgically remove the tumor. Doctors may also recommend radiation therapy and chemotherapy to treat the cancer.
In the more advanced stages of cancer, or if surgery may not be an available option, people may need to undergo a combination of chemoradiation, immunotherapy, and targeted therapy.
Doctors can recommend the most appropriate type of treatment for esophageal cancer
After the diagnosis, a person’s doctor will discuss with them what treatment options they recommend and what each one involves.
They will also be able to answer any questions the person may have so that they can make an informed decision about their treatment plan.
Here are some more frequently asked questions about esophageal cancer treatment.
Can you be cured from esophageal cancer?
Esophageal cancer does not often have a positive outcome. However, depending on the stage of cancer at diagnosis and how the body reacts to the treatment, it is
It is important to note that the outlook will vary for each individual. A person’s doctor will be able to advise on what their outlook might look like.
What is the best treatment for esophageal cancer?
Can esophageal cancer be treated without surgery?
Doctors can treat esophageal cancer without surgery. Treatment options
A person’s doctor will discuss their options with them so that they can make an informed decision about their treatment.
What is the life expectancy for esophageal cancer?
The 5-year survival rate of esophageal cancer is
The survival rate refers to the proportion of people who are still alive for a length of time after receiving a particular diagnosis. For example, a 5-year survival rate of 50% means that 50%, or half, of the people are still alive 5 years after receiving the diagnosis.
It is important to remember that these figures are estimates and are based on the results of previous studies or treatments. A person can consult a healthcare professional about how their condition is going to affect them.
One of the most common treatments for esophageal cancer is surgery. In its early stages, doctors may be able to shrink an esophageal cancerous tumor with a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy, or chemoradiation, and then surgically remove the tumor.
However, when a person cannot undergo surgery or cancer has spread throughout their body, doctors may use a combination of chemoradiation, immunotherapy, and targeted therapy.
Following an esophageal cancer diagnosis, a person’s doctor will be able to discuss their treatment options with them and answer any questions they may have.