Understanding Targeted Cancer Therapies

Natasha Tiffany, MD, administers innovative cancer treatments, such as targeted therapy, through Hematology Oncology of Salem, LLP, in Salem, Oregon. In preparation for her career, she underwent fellowship training in modern cancer care through Oregon Health and Science University. Before deciding whether to pursue targeted cancer therapy, patients ought to consult with an experienced professional like Natasha Tiffany, MD.

A relatively new treatment method, targeted therapy encompasses those medications that hone in on and influence specific molecules that regulate the growth and overall survival of cancer cells. Such methods are distinct from traditional chemotherapy, which does damage to both healthy and malignant cells. Currently, there is a range of targeted therapies available, including those that rely on hormones to treat hormone-sensitive growths and those that trigger controlled cell death in tumors.

For an oncologist to consider targeted therapy as a possible option, the patient in question needs to have a cancer that matches the available therapies. This may require that patients undergo genetic testing to see if their tumor cells actually have the necessary molecules for the therapy to target.

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