In most hospitals a team of specialists will work together to decide which treatment/s is/are best for you. This is called a multidisciplinary team (MDT), and will include:
- A surgeon who specialises in gynaecological cancers (gynaecologist or gynae-oncologist)
- A clinical or medical oncologist (chemotherapy and radiotherapy specialist)
- A pathologist
- A radiologist.
The MDT may also include a number of other health care professionals, such as:
- A nurse specialist
- A dietician
- A physiotherapist
- A psychologist or counsellor
- A research nurse or doctor.
Depending on what stage your cancer is, the potential side effects, your general health and your preferences, your team will consider the treatments listed below.
In order to fully understand which treatment will be right for you, you will need to discuss this with your consultant at your next appointment. The aim of any treatment is to give you the best possible outcomes with the least side effects.
Your specialist may also talk to you about or invite you to participate in a clinical trial. These offer an opportunity to try new treatments or procedures. They may also be comparing one type of treatment with another. Trials go through rigorous assessment to ensure no treatment on offer is harmful.
Clinical trials are used to try and improve the way that cancers are treated, including cervical cancer. The more women that participate, the quicker treatment can develop. However, it is important to remember that your care will not be affected whether or not you choose to participate in a trial. They might not be suitable for everyone but please do talk to your Gynae-oncology team about them.
Cancer Research UK provides detailed information about clinical trials and how to get involved, find out more on their website.