Vulvar cancer treatment
Vulvar cancer is a rare malignant tumour which develops in the female external genitalia. Smoking, HPV, and immune system weakness increase the risk of developing this disease. Before choosing a treatment method, doctors perform a colposcopy, ultrasound, and biopsy. The treatment strategy involves surgery, various types of radiation, chemotherapy and targeted drugs.
When cells in the vulva mutate and transform into cancerous, it is called vulvar cancer. The vulva is the tissue that surrounds a woman's genitals. A tumour in the vulva most often develops in the labia minora and labia majora, as well as in the perineum. Depending on the location of the neoplasm, the neoplasm can be:
- Localized - the most common type begins and develops in one organ place.
- Regional - when cancer spreads to other parts of the body and lymph nodes.
- Distant - the tumour of the vulva spreads metastases throughout the body.
According to statistics, vulvar cancer accounts for 6% of all cancers of the female genital organs. Usually, with age, the risk of cancer of the vulva increases. The median age at diagnosis is 65 years.
Often in the early stages, vulvar malignancy causes no symptoms or signs. However, when the tumour is enlarged, typical symptoms include itching and burning, pain, bleeding outside of menstruation, discolouration of the area of the skin, and swelling on the vulva.
The location, stage, and grade of cancer will determine treatment options. Usually, the primary treatment method for vulval cancer is surgery. It is performed after a biopsy (tissue sampling and detailed examination under a microscope). After that, doctors might use external beam radiation therapy or systemic chemotherapy to kill cancer cells or prevent them from growing. In addition, to conventional treatment, your gynaecologists-oncologist might recommend targeted or immune drugs as well as advanced treatment options for metastatic formation. Such methods can be metastases ablation, embolization, cryotherapy, etc.
As a rule, the earlier the vulval cancer is diagnosed, the higher the survival rate. In most cases, the disease has a favourable prognosis. So, with the localized type, which occurs most often, the 5-year survival rate is 86.2%. However, when the tumour spreads, the rate sharply deteriorates to 48.4% for regional cancers and 22.9% for distant malignancy.
Where can I get Vulvar cancer treatment?
What are the best clinics for Vulvar cancer treatment?
Who are the best doctors for Vulvar cancer?
Prof. Dr. med Harald-Robert Bruch, MSc, PhD from Oncological and Haematological Praxis Clinic Bonn
Prof. Dr. med. Florian Bassermann from University Hospital rechts der Isar Munich
Prof. Dr. med. Marion Kiechle from University Hospital rechts der Isar Munich
Prof. Dr. med. Stefan Eber from M1 Private Clinic Munich
Prof. Dr. med. Sven Mahner from University Hospital Ludwig-Maximilians Munich