NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Adolescents and Young Adults with Cancer, Version 1.2017
What you can expect during
Part 4 focuses on the treatment process
and the different stages of care you will
go through. Learn all you can about your
treatment options. It’s important to stick
with the treatment plan that you and your
doctor decide to do.
Getting treated for cancer can be a strange journey.
You know where you want to end up—healthy—but
it’s not always clear how you’re going to get there or
how long it will take. Depending on your diagnosis,
the process can take a long time. It can be weeks,
months, or even years for treatment that is followed
by many more years of follow-up care. And all along
the way you are a cancer survivor.
What are the stages of
Cancer treatment is rarely a one-shot deal. Most
patients go through several rounds of treatment to
make sure the cancer is either gone or under control.
Although the specific therapies used during each
stage will depend on your diagnosis, your treatment
plan is likely to take you through several stages.
Neoadjuvant or induction therapy
Neoadjuvant or induction therapy is usually given to
reduce the size of the cancer before cancer surgery.
It can be helpful for a large primary tumor. Shrinking
the tumor may make the surgery less complicated.
Induction therapy may also be used to prepare the
body for a stem cell transplant (or bone marrow
transplant) in patients with leukemia or lymphoma.
The transplant gives blood or bone marrow stem
cells intravenously to restore cells that have been
destroyed by cancer or its treatment.
Neoadjuvant therapy may include radiation
therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of several
treatments. If the chosen treatment carries a risk of
side effects such as nausea or being very tired and
Navigating the treatment
32 What are the stages of treatment?
34 Who is on my treatment team?
36 What does a treatment plan involve?
37 How can I learn more about treatment options?
38 How do I stay on track with my treatment plan?