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How is cancer treated?

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This section describes some of the common treatments that your child might have to treat their cancer, how these treatments work and what side effects they might have.

For most types of children's cancer, combinations of treatments are used to make sure the child has the best chance of being cured.

The treatment team

Treatment and care of children with cancer is usually provided by a team of health professionals called a multidisciplinary team.

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Surgery is one of the main treatments for children's cancers that involve a growth or tumour. This section describes types of surgeries and potential side effects.

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Chemotherapy uses medicines to destroy cancer cells. This section describes types of chemotherapy and their potential side effects.

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Radiation therapy

Radiation therapy (also known as radiotherapy) uses radiation to destroy cancer cells. This section describes types of radiation therapy and their potential side effects.

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Targeted therapy

Targeted therapy includes a range of treatments that target the genes, proteins or tissues that make cancer cells different from normal cells, or that contribute to cancer cell growth.

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Stem cell transplant

A stem cell transplant is also known as a bone marrow transplant. This procedure may be recommended for children with blood cancer, such as leukaemia or lymphoma.

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Careful observation

Children with some types of cancer may not need active treatment, but are closely monitored. This is called careful observation.

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List of references used for How is cancer treated?

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published: Sunday, 23 August, 2015