Stage IV cancer Treatment
Stage IV cancers are advanced and larger cancers, have grown into nearby tissues, and/or have spread to nearby lymph nodes in the neck. Multidisciplinary approach is required for optimal decision making, treatment planning, and post treatment response assessment. They should be treated at high-volume centers whenever possible, where expertise in each of these disciplines may be better. These cancers are often with a combination of surgery, radiation therapy or chemoradiation therapy. The choice of treatment is influenced by the site of cancer, its spread to nearby tissues, the expected side effects, patient preferences, and the patient’s current health status. These cancers are treated first with surgery to remove the cancer and neck lymph nodes. This is often followed by radiation or chemoradiation to lower the chance of the cancer coming back. Another option is to treat cancers first with chemoradiation therapy and any cancer that remains after chemoradiation is removed with surgery. Some doctors give chemo as the first treatment, followed by chemoradiation, and then surgery if needed. Stage IV cancers, have spread to other parts of the body such as the lungs are usually treated with chemotherapy or radiation to help relieve symptoms from the cancer or to help prevent new problems.