- Different paths for the treatment of childhood cancer.
- Monoclonal drugs as an alternative to cancer treatment.
- Each cancer case must be treated individually.
A recurring question for parents who have a son or daughter with cancer is the correct choice of treatment.
Dr. Yadira Melchor Vidal, pediatric oncologist at ABC Medical Center, indicates that we must bear in mind that not all types of cancer are treated with the same strategies, for which there are currently three conventional or common treatments:
This is the most common strategy for treating childhood cancer and it can be implemented orally or intravenously.
For its oral application, pills or syrups can be used that the child must consume.
Whereas, intravenously, medications will be delivered directly into the vein. These will reach the diseased cells, but since it is not a selective drug, they could also attack good cells, affecting the bone marrow, that is, their immune system.
This is a constant concern for parents, but Dr. Melchor points out that, despite there being adverse effects in this type of treatment, there are also strategies to correct them. In case the immune system is weakened, vaccines can be applied to stimulate it, blood transfusion is used when there is a drop in hemoglobin, and, for platelets, more platelets can also be administered, correcting the adverse effects.
This treatment is selective and allows only the tumor cells to be damaged, without touching other organs. Radiation therapy is administered by radiation oncologists through specialized equipment called a linear accelerator, which sends rays to the area where the diseased cells are found.
Surgery is used for tumor resection or removal; an action that will be performed as long as this is feasible and does not damage structures that are around the disease.
These treatments can be implemented independently or combined, it all depends on each particular case and the type of tumor that the child is facing; the decision will be indicated by the pediatric oncologist to find the best strategy to follow.
Additionally, Dr. Melchor says that there is an alternative to these treatments, monoclonal drugs, which are a variety of drugs specifically focused on attacking diseased cells. When talking about monoclonal drugs, we talk about precision medicine for the treatment of childhood cancer.
At ABC Medical Center’s Department of Pediatric Oncology, we can provide you with specialized care. Contact us!