If your doctor says that you have a gynecologic cancer, ask to be referred to a gynecologic oncologist—a doctor who has been trained to treat cancers of a woman’s reproductive system. This doctor will work with you to create a treatment plan.
Types of Treatment
There are several ways to treat gynecologic cancer. The treatment depends on the type of cancer and how far it has spread. Treatments include surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation. People with cancer often get more than one kind of treatment.
- Surgery: Doctors remove cancer tissue in an operation.
- Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs to stop or slow the growth of cancer cells. Chemotherapy may cause side effects, but these often get better or go away when treatment is over. Chemotherapy drugs may be given in several forms including pills or through an IV (intravenous) injection.
- Radiation: Radiation uses high-energy rays (similar to X-rays) to try to kill the cancer cells and stop them from spreading. The rays are aimed at the part of the body where the cancer is.
Different treatments may be provided by different doctors on your medical team.
Gynecologic oncologists are doctors who have been trained to treat cancers of a woman’s reproductive system. These physicians are specialists who provide comprehensive surgical and medical care for women with gynecological cancers.
Gynecologic oncologists often work with radiation oncologists who are doctors that treat cancers with radiation.
If you have a gynecologic cancer, you may want to take part in a clinical trial. Clinical trials study new treatment options to see if they are safe and effective. Ask your gynecological oncologist about clinical trials for your diagnosis.
Additional information about clinical trials is provided on the sites listed below:
Click here for SWGynOnc clinical trials
Complementary and Alternative Medicine
For information, visit NCI’s Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Be sure to talk to your doctor about your use of complementary and alternative medicine.
Center for Disease Control