The treatment of cancer with the help of certain agents and drugs that travels in the entire system of the body for destroying cancer cells and simultaneously also helps the body to defend itself is the main focus of both medical oncology and hematology. This is assumed as a systemic treatment as compared to radiation oncology that only focuses on treating a particular part of the body. Chemotherapy, drugs and certain other related therapies such as hormone therapies and biological response modifiers are used in medical oncology for treating cancers.
Hormone Therapy : This therapy is considered as a systemic treatment and is also known as endocrine-based therapy. Hormone therapy interferes with certain hormones (natural body chemicals) that help in stimulating the growth of the cancer. Endometrial, breast, ovarian and prostate are certain types of cancer that are characteristically sensitive to hormones. The hormone therapy drugs are structured chemically so as to interfere and prevent the development of such types of cancer. This therapy can be combined with radiation therapy or can also be used alone.
Chemotherapy : This therapy may be given before or after surgery. Certain types of drugs are used for destroying the cancer cells. These drugs can be injected into a vein (intravenously) that enters into the bloodstream and travels through the entire body. Chemotherapy can also be administered in pill form. The treatment regimen and the type of cancer determines the duration of the treatment. This therapy is usually given in cycles so as to provide a rest period in between the treatments. There are different types of chemotherapy drugs that include –
Molecular or Targeted Therapy : Targeted therapy is directed to a signaling pathway or a specific target that makes use of certain drugs for blocking the spread and growth of the cancer. This is done by interfering with division and growth of a cancer cell in various ways and at different points during the spread, development and growth of cancer. This therapy offers an effective treatment for cancer without damaging healthy tissues and focusing more on cellular and molecular changes that are specific to cancer.
The specialty of pathology, internal medicine, pediatrics, physiology, clinical laboratory that is primarily concerned with the study of blood diseases, blood and blood-forming organs is known as hematology. It also involves the study of etiology along with prevention, prognosis, treatment and diagnosis of blood diseases. Following tools are used for managing the blood diseases –
Common Conditions of Blood Diseases