What is gynecologic oncology?
Gynecologic oncology involves the diagnosis and treatment of cancers of the female reproductive system. The Gynecologic Oncology Program at Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) provides innovative treatments for women with gynecologic cancers, including the following:
Experienced care team
If you have gynecologic cancer, it’s important to have a gynecologic oncologist as part of your cancer team. Our gynecologic oncologists have expertise in treating gynecologic malignancies using advanced technology that helps to spare healthy tissue.
They work closely with your oncologists and the rest of your care team to tailor treatments to your specific needs, reduce side effects, and address any concerns such as fertility or sexual function issues.
Individualized treatment approach
Before you begin treatment, our gynecologic oncologists perform a full diagnostic evaluation, which may include a pelvic examination, ultrasound, lab and/or imaging tests, to determine the exact type and stage of the cancer. We can perform accurate staging surgery and cytoreductive (debulking) surgery to find and remove tumors that have spread in the pelvic and abdominal areas.
Since gynecologic cancers are complex, treatment often involves multiple modalities such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. We understand every woman is different, so your treatment plan will include innovative procedures and therapies based on your unique needs and treatment goals.
For example, for patients with cancer that has spread through the abdomen, our gynecologic oncologists can give chemotherapy directly in the abdominal cavity, called intraperitoneal (IP) chemotherapy. Additionally, we can provide minimally invasive alternatives to complex surgery, such as robotic surgery.
We can also offer radiation therapies like IORT, which delivers concentrated radiation therapy to a tumor bed during surgery. For some patients with inoperable or surgically complex tumors, we can offer radiation therapy options like CyberKnife.
If you want to have children, it's important to know that certain gynecologic cancer treatments can interfere with your fertility and prevent or complicate pregnancy. We’ll address your questions and concerns so you can decide what works for you. If you decide you want to preserve your fertility, we'll discuss with you a variety of fertility-sparing options as early in the treatment process as possible.
Learn about the Oncofertility Preservation Program at our Philadelphia hospital and the Oncofertility Preservation Program at our Tulsa hospital.
Managing side effects
In addition to fertility concerns, our gynecologic oncologists understand the impact of gynecologic cancer and its treatment on other aspects of a woman’s life, including sexuality, physical and emotional well-being, and family dynamics.
Throughout your treatment, we’ll provide integrative oncology services, like nutrition therapy, naturopathic medicine, pain management, counseling and physical therapy, to help reduce treatment-related side effects, including sexual side effects, and improve your quality of life.