What Are the Treatments for Stage 4 Bone Cancer?
One treatment for Stage 4 bone cancer is chemotherapy. Cancer Treatment Centers of America describes chemotherapy as the use of anticancer drugs to slow or stop rapidly dividing cancer cells. Treatments also include targeted therapy and radioactive therapy.
Chemotherapy is used to relieve symptoms of an advanced cancer, but it also is used as primary treatment, to shrink the cancer cells prior to another treatment or to destroy cancer cells after a previous treatment, according to Cancer Treatment Centers of America. Chemotherapy can be taken in multiple ways: orally, vein infusion, topically, by injection or direct placement. For bone cancer, the side effects of chemotherapy include nausea, vomiting, hair loss and mouth sores.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America also lists targeted therapy as a treatment option for bone cancer. Targeted therapy is similar to chemotherapy, as it blocks cancer cells, but it is different from chemotherapy because it interferes with specific molecules involved in tumor growth. Targeting specific molecules allows healthy cells to thrive, resulting in fewer side effects than chemotherapy.
Radiation therapy is used in combination with other treatments to stop the growth of cancer cells and also to relieve the symptoms of advanced cancer, according to Cancer Treatment Centers of America. This type of therapy includes directing radiation from a machine to cancer cells inside the body, placing radioactive material directly on or near cancer cells, or sending a radioactive substance through the blood to locate and destroy cancer cells.