Colon cancer, or colorectal cancer, high incidence and prevalence are connected with spreading of the Western lifestyle. Lack of physical activity, obesity, frequent eating processed and red meat, tobacco smoking, and alcohol consumption depress the anticancer immunity. This is the most common cause of cancer tumor development.
Based on the results of recent clinical trials, first-line therapeutic options now include minimally invasive or endoscopic interventions instead of conventional surgeries, different forms of embolization and targeted therapy.
Endoscopic procedures and targeted embolization
At the early disease stages, colon cancer treatment in Germany starts from surgery (the intervention is meant to be curative). German doctors prefer endoscopic interventions, as they pose less health risks and provide faster recovery in the postoperative period. Endoscopic and minimally invasive surgeries include:
- Colonoscopy with removing of suspicious or malignant polyps. Colonoscopy in Germany is painless, as it is carried out under the general anesthesia.
- Endoscopy with partial removing of the intestinal mucous membrane if large superficial changes are present.
- Laparoscopic interventions in invasive tumors that have affected the intestinal wall or lymph nodes.
Embolization is blocking the tumor's arteries with miniaturized spheres. First of all, embolization deprives the neoplasm from nutrients. During the chemoembolization, or TACE, emboli contain additional antineoplastic medications.
Radiation therapy that does not go beyond the intestine borders
Localized radiation therapy has few advantages compared to the external-beam one. It is more sparing and preserves healthy tissues. It is targeted and affects the tumor precisely. It is tolerated better and can be administered even in the debilitated patients.
- Transarterial radioembolization, or TARE, includes introduction of the emboli covered with radioactive yttrium-90 into the tumor's main arteries.
- Endocavitary radiation therapy is anal introduction of devices with radioactive substances into the intestine. Being placed close by the tumor, the device precisely irradiates it. Procedure requires only about 4 minutes and may be performed repeatedly, if necessary.
- Interstitial brachytherapy is surgical implantation of tiny radioactive particles (seeds) inside the tumor. The released irradiation travels short distance, so it does not spread beyond the tumor borders. Over time, the radiation dose decreases, so the repeated intervention may be required.
Medications with fewer side effects and enhanced action
Chemotherapy is the most widespread type of the pharmacotherapy in patients with colon cancer. It is applied both before and after the surgical treatment, or as the palliative measure. The same time, two more groups of medications are used in the specialized German healthcare facilities:
- Targeted therapy is directed at the specific molecular and cellular changes that arise in colon oncology. These are neovascularization (medications Avastin, Cyramza, Zaltrap), intense expression of the EGF-receptors (medications Erbitux, Vectibix) on the cellular membrane, and high kinase activity (medication Stivarga).
- Immunotherapy restores ability of the patient’s immune system to detect and destroy atypical cells. Such medications are represented by the immune checkpoint inhibitors (Opdivo, Yervoy, Keytruda).
Symptomatic treatment is another essential part of the comprehensive colon malignancies management. It supports the vital organs and improves general health state.
Choosing hospital abroad with confidence
If for the certain reason you have decided to undergo colon cancer treatment in Germany, it will be reasonable to use Booking Health service. Booking Health is the only certified medical tourism provider that works with all leading German oncological hospitals.
Booking Health will give you advice on:
- Choosing the right hospital that specializes in oncology and gastroenterology
- Preliminary distant communication with German doctors
- Booking the urgent appointment
- Understanding the approximate diagnostic or treatment scheme
- Avoiding overpricing and additional fees (saving up to 50% of cost of treatment in Germany)
- Buying and forwarding of medical products
- Distant communication with the doctor after returning home
- Translation of medical reports, understanding further recommendations
- Organization of additional or control examinations, if necessary
- Booking accommodation, tickets, transfer, finding medical interpreter
Should you leave cancer treatment request on the Booking Health website, bookinghealth.com, coordinating medical specialist will contact you the same day.