Treatment Types

There are a lot of different types of treatment for cancer – they all depend on the type of cancer and where the disease is found in the body. Clinical trials are an important treatment option for cancer patients of all ages as they provide the most advanced treatments.

Treatment may be given in one form, for example - surgery; or your child may have more than one type of treatment for example - surgery and radiotherapy. The consultant (oncologist / haematologist) will discuss a suitable course of treatment especially designed for your child. The main types of treatment are listed below:

  • Surgery
  • Chemotherapy (where chemical substances are introduced to the body to kill cancer cells)
  • Radiotherapy (a treatment involving the use of high-energy radiation)
  • Brachytherapy (A type of internal radiotherapy)
  • Precision Medicine (this form of treatment uses information about the genes, proteins, and other characteristics of the cancer, to diagnose or treat the disease)
  • Bone Marrow Transplantation and Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplantation
  • Targeted Therapies (which interfere with specific molecules that control cancer cell growth)

Other Treatment Methods

  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors (removing the blood supply to tumours)
  • Biological Therapies (treatments that affect cancer cells, e.g. stop or slow cancer cell growth)
  • Cryosurgery (using extreme cold to treat tumours)
  • Hyperthermia (treating tumours with heat)
  • Lasers in Cancer Treatment (using high-intensity light in to treat cancer cells)
  • Photodynamic Therapy (PDT – uses a photosensitizing agent with a specific type of light to kill cancer cells)

Cancer Research UK has information on different types of cancer treatment.

Other issues to think about during treatment include: