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30

NCCN Guidelines for Patients

®

:

Brain Cancer – Gliomas, Version 1.2016

2

Test and treatment overview

Review

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Fatigue is a severe tiredness despite getting

enough sleep. Learning how to conserve

energy may help. If you’re healthy enough,

some exercise can also lessen fatigue.

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Depression and anxiety can be very

overwhelming. Medicine, talk therapy, and

exercise are some ways to lessen these

symptoms. Ask your treatment team for help.

Supportive care can also help with treatment

decisions as you may have more than one option.

It can also help with coordination of care between

health providers. Talk with your treatment team to

plan the best supportive care for you.

Review

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MRI and other imaging tests make pictures

of the insides of your body. Imaging tests are

used for diagnosis, treatment planning, and

assessing treatment results.

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Surgery removes tissue in order to confirm

there’s cancer and to rid your body of cancer as

much as possible.

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Tissue from the tumor will be tested for

markers that help to diagnose the disease and

plan treatment.

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Radiation therapy uses high-energy rays

to destroy cancer cells or stop them from

increasing in number.

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Chemotherapy aims to stop cancer cells from

completing their life cycle so they can’t increase

in number.

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Targeted therapy is a cancer treatment that

affects molecules that are key to cancer cells.

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Clinical trials give people access to new tests

and treatments that they otherwise can’t

receive. If proven to work well, they may in time

be approved by the FDA.

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Supportive care aims to improve your quality of

life. It includes symptom management.

Complementary and alternative medicine

CAM (

c

omplementary and

a

lternative

m

edicine) is a

group of treatments that aren’t often given by doctors.

There is much interest today in CAM for cancer. Many

CAMs are being studied to see if they are truly helpful.

Complementary medicines are treatments given along

with usual medical treatments. While CAMs aren’t known

to kill cancer cells, they may improve your comfort and

well-being. Two examples are acupuncture for pain

management and yoga for relaxation.

Alternative medicine is used in place of usual medicine.

Some alternative medicines are sold as cures even

though they haven’t been proven to work in clinical trials.

If there was good proof that CAMs or other treatments

cured cancer, they would be included in this book.

It is important to tell your treatment team if you are using

any CAMs. They can tell you which CAMs may be helpful

and which CAMs may limit how well medical treatments

work.