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Charting the Path to Treatment

The path to a treatment decision can be long and winding, with numerous forks in the road. There are a number of factors, like cancer type, stage, overall health, and genetics, that go into choosing treatment. Of those who took our Impact of Cancer survey, over one third were initially diagnosed with advanced stage cancer while one fourth are currently advanced stage. When it came to the types of treatment people chose, surgery (63%) and chemotherapy (56%) were the most common, followed by active surveillance (47%), radiation therapy (42%), immunotherapy (20%), and hormone therapy (18%).

Shared experiences matter

Despite the differences in cancer diagnosis, people shared some common treatment experiences. Those who had chemotherapy tended to be happiest with their treatment decision, whereas those who underwent surgery sometimes tell a different story. They were most likely to regret their treatment decision, frequently saying they did not know the full effect surgery would have on their daily life and felt they did not have all the necessary information when making this decision.

We want to hear from you – share your treatment experience in the comments.

The Impact of Cancer survey was conducted online from July through August of 2018. Of the 1,625 people who completed the survey, 1,517 were people diagnosed with a form of cancer and 108 were caregivers.


  • Ann Harper moderator
    6 months ago

    I had surgery and hate the effects it’s had on my body. I have thyroid cancer and the surgery not only didn’t cure me, but the cancer metastasized. Additionally, I will have to take a pill for the rest of my life.

    My daughter, on the other hand, had chemo to treat Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. It did cure her but she was left with painful neuropathy and chemo brain.

    I think whatever treatment you choose will have side effects, so I agree, picking the right one for you can be a long and winding road.

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