How Can Target Therapy Help in Combatting Cancer?
Posted: May 14, 2021
Cancer can affect any part of your body. The most conventional treatment suggested by oncology specialists is chemotherapy.
But some cancers are treated through targeted therapy.
Your tumor may be tested as the first step to identify the targets which can be treated with drugs.
Post this process, and the specialists would suggest a customized treatment that would be best for you and convenient for your family members.
This method of individualized treatment is followed by many hospitals and treatment centers nowadays.
How Does Targeted Therapy Work?
Targeted therapy focuses on the proteins that control the growth, division, and spread of cancer cells.
Researchers are putting in much effort to find out about changes in DNA and proteins that are behind the cause of cancer.
These would help them in more effective treatment with targeted therapy.
The benefits of targeted therapy are:
- Destruction of cancer cells
Cancer cells can hide from your immune system. Some forms of targeted therapies can identify the cancer cells and make it easier for the immune system to destroy them.
Several targeted therapies boost up your immune system to help them fight cancer more strongly.
- Prevent growth of cancer cells
Cancer cells contain some modified proteins on their surface. This prompts the cells to divide and form new cells irrespective of their requirements inside your body.
Targeted therapy prevents this cell formation and helps in the rapid spread of cancer.
- Stops the signals for the formation of blood vessels
Tumors require bold vessels to grow in size and signals for the formation of new blood vessels. This process is called angiogenesis.
Targeted therapy interferes with this signaling process and prevents blood supply to the tumor.
It may also destroy the blood vessels in the tumor and cause it to shrink.
- Provides substances for killing cancer cells
Target therapy identifies certain cells with targets on their surface and kills them by combining monoclonal antibodies, radiation, toxins, and chemotherapy drugs.
- Blocks the hormones that help the growth of cancer cells
Breast and prostate cancers generally grow with the help of certain hormones.
Targeted therapy consists of hormone therapy that prevents the formation of specific hormones inside the body.
It also prevents hormones from affecting the cells.
Some Words of Caution
There are some side effects of targeted therapy that you should be aware of.
Instead of worrying about the side effects, just inform your oncology specialists about them so that you get the medication for their treatment.
The symptoms include:
- Liver problems and diarrhea
- Problems with the healing of wounds and blood clotting
- High blood pressure
- Rashes and dry skin
- Mouth sores
- Loss of hair color
Targeted therapy may work successfully if the tumors inside your body contain the targets which can be treated with the appropriate medicines.
This therapy is relatively new and beneficial for the treatment of certain types of cancer.
But you should keep in mind the side effects also.
The oncology specialists would help in you deciding whether you should go for it.
Sarah K, a professional writer who share interests in different creative niches. Her ideas and tips towards such niches have contributed to the online community.