Chemotherapy can be an important aspect of neuroendocrine tumor therapy. While surgery is usually the primary form of neuroendocrine tumor treatment, chemotherapy may be provided before an operation to help shrink a tumor, or after an operation to help destroy any residual cancer cells. If a patient is not eligible for – or chooses not to undergo – surgery, chemotherapy may also be recommended as a standalone treatment.
Because neuroendocrine tumors are relatively rare, researchers have not yet developed a standard chemotherapy regimen for neuroendocrine tumor therapy. In some cases, patients are given medications that have been proven effective for treating other types of cancer. In other cases, patients are enrolled in clinical trials, where they can access novel chemotherapy drugs and drug combinations. A patient’s specific needs are evaluated when a medical oncologist creates his or her treatment plan. The exact recommendation given will depend on factors such as the histological (cellular) type of the tumor, the size of the tumor and the patient’s age.
Moffitt Cancer Center’s Gastrointestinal Oncology Program offers a complete range of therapies for neuroendocrine tumors, from chemotherapy and surgery to radiation therapy and interventional radiology, all in one convenient location. Patients who choose Moffitt for their neuroendocrine tumor chemotherapy also benefit from:
- The expert opinions of several medical oncologists, as well as other surgeons and radiation oncologists who specialize in treating neuroendocrine tumors
- Weekly assessments and treatment adjustments conducted by our multispecialty tumor board
- Numerous supportive care services to assist with the side effects of chemotherapy and other treatments
- The convenience of accessing all of these services without a referral