What Are the Most Effective Cancer Treatments?


Quick Answer

As of 2015, the most effective types of treatment for cancer include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy and targeted therapy, according to the American Cancer Society. Additional treatments that prove effective for treating cancer include stem cell transplants, photodynamic therapy and hyperthermia treatments as medical professionals continue to use and study them.

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What Are the Most Effective Cancer Treatments?
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Full Answer

Surgical intervention gives a person with cancer the greatest chance of a cure for cancer when it has not metastasized to other organs or areas of the body, explains the American Cancer Society. The majority of individuals who have cancer receive some form of surgery. Radiation therapy, which may be used in conjunction with other types of treatment, uses high-energy waves to attack cancer cells. Chemotherapy, another common cancer treatment, uses very potent medications to attack and kill cancer cells. There are more than 100 types of chemotherapy, and the type a person receives during treatment is based on the type of the cancer.

Immunotherapy uses a person's own immune system to fight cancer, while targeted therapy attacks cancer cells and does less damage to healthy cells, as detailed by the American Cancer Society. Targeted therapy is a newer and increasingly more common form of treatment. Stem cell transplants involve the use of bone marrow along with other types of stem cell therapy to fight cancer. Hyperthermia is the use of heat to attack cancer cells. While early stage studies show mixed results, hyperthermia is being studied for use in fighting many types of cancer as of 2015.

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