Oncology

cabecera-oncologia

With a serious illness such as cancer, there are often many possibilities for treatment and recovery. When choosing a hospital, for a second opinion or when beginning a treatment, it is important to investigate the quality and qualifications of the consultants, the treatment alternatives available and the characteristics of the care environment.

At Vithas Xanit International Hospital, the Xanit Oncological Institute (XOI) brings together all the medical procedures needed to cure cancer. Our team of professionals and internationally renowned Oncologists place special emphasis on personalized care for each patient.

Vithas Xanit Oncological Institute gathers together all the medical structures related to the prevention, diagnosis and processing of cancer:

  • Diagnostic imaging
  • Pathological anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Medical Oncology
  • Radiation oncology
  • Oncology Committee

The cancer treatment administered depends on the type of cancer and its severity. The treatment of cancer is usually on-going for some time and therefore the Xanit Oncological Institute is constantly ensuring, that they have access the latest advancements and developments in these treatments.

Our Oncology Department consists of a series of functional units that work closely together to form a multidisciplinary team who creates a comprehensive and individualised cancer treatment plan. This ensure that patients receive personalised care according to the type of tumor.

The team work alongside any other relevant departments to determine the patient’s therapeutic and diagnostic treatment.

The Xanit Oncological Institute comprises of the following units:

  • Functional Unit for breast tumour and gynecological tumor
    Comprising of consultants from Gynecology, Plastic Surgery, Radiology, Nuclear Medicine (Sentinel Node), Medical Oncology and Radiation Oncology
  • Functional Unit for digestive tumor
    Comprising of consultants from General Surgery, Interventional Radiology, Medical Oncology and Radiation Oncology.
  • Functional Unit for urological tumour and lymphoma
    Comprising of consultants from Urology, Medical Oncology and Radiation Oncology.
  • Functional Unit for Genetic Counselling and Screening
    Comprising of consultants from Medical Oncology, Radiology, Pulmonology and Gastroenterology.
  • Functional unit for lung, head tumor and neck tumor
    Comprising of consultants of Otorhinolaryngology, Medical Oncology and Radiation Oncology, Neurosurgery, Neurology.

The success of the cancer treatment depends on early detection and the progression of cancer. Therefore, Vithas Xanit International Hospital also has a Cancer Prevention and Genetic Counselling Unit.

Cancer prevention and early detection

Vithas Xanit International Hospital offers various departments dedicated to the prevention and early detection of cancer:

  • A Unit for cancer prevention, whose aim is to significantly reduce the number of cases and mortality rate of patients with: breast cancer, colorectal cancer, uterine cervix cancer and lung cancer.
  • A Unit for Hereditary Cancer designed to detect and advise people with a greater genetic risk. Genetic Counselling Program.

Genetic Counselling Unit

Within its Xanit Oncological Institute (XOI), Vithas Xanit International Hospital has created a Unit for Genetic Counselling. Their aim is to offer possible testings to patients with a family  history of cancer thus enabling them to find out whether they have a hereditary predisposition to this disease.

When we talk about hereditary cancer, we are referring to the genetic predisposition to the illness rather than the disease itself, i.e. the increased probability of developing cancer  at some point during your life.

There are a growing number of cancers with a family component, the following are the most frequent ones:

  • Breast cancer (15%  related to genetic factors)
  • Colorectal cancer (10%  related to genetic factors)
  • Prostate cancer
  • Ovarian cancer

In the event that there are signs of hereditary cancer, the Genetic Counselling Unit performs a genetic blood test twhich determine if there has been a disruption in the gene that causes the appearance of cancer.

For those who are carriers of genetic mutations with predisposition to cancer, we will develop an individual monitoring plan that is intended to prevent the onset of the disease as well as to diagnose the disease in its very early stages.

Screening Unit for colon cancer and lung cancer

For colon cancer and lung cancer, there are certain tests that can be performed which are really effective in demonstrating the early diagnosis of these tumors.

Thanks to this ability to diagnose the cancer in an initial stage, the likelihood of a cure with the appropriate treatment is very high.

In the event of the diagnosis of an incipient malignant tumour, we shall propose a treatment plan using a multidisciplinary approach.

Program for early detection of colon cancer

The program for early detection of colon cancer includes a series of tests:

  • A complete blood test, including the tumour marker “CEA”
  • A complete colonoscopy with sedation

In the event of detecting polyps in the colon, they will be removed and analysed in the pathological anatomy laboratory.

The period of implementation of such tests will be every 5 years if the colonoscopy is normal. However it will be performed every 2 years if polyps are detected.

Finally, there will be advice on healthy dietary habits which can decrease in the risk of developing colon cancer.

Program for early detection of lung cancer

This is one of the most aggressive tumour that exist and the efforts of the science have focused on early detection to increase the likelihood of a cure with surgery, achieving a lower removal of healthy lung.

The program for early detection of lung cancer includes:

  • A CAT – MDCT scanner (three dimensional) – low radiation
  • A study of the respiratory capacity (RFT)

Finally, there will be advice on lifestyle habits such as smoking. Likewise, support for giving up smoking will be offered to people upon request.

> MEDICAL ONCOLOGY

The Medical Oncology within the Xanit Oncological Institute offers both standards chemotherapy treatments as well as more advanced molecular treatments.

Standard chemotherapy

Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs to destroy cancer cells.

There are more than 100 different medicines which can fight cancer and prevent the growth, propagation and spreading of malignant cells.

When cells are healthy, they grow and divide in a controlled manner. However, cancer cells are precisely are different and grow uncontrollably.

These medications, which can be used on their own or in combination with others, are designed to block this chaotic multiplication of cells.

The various agents used in cancer therapies work and affect malignant cells in different ways.

Chemotherapy administration

Chemotherapeutic agents can be given in these forms:

  • Orally
  • As intramuscular or intravenous injections
  • Through a catheter, a flexible tube that is inserted into a large vein for the whole treatment process
  • Intrathecal Route (intraspinal space)

There are other routes of administration, depending on the case.

The dosage and type of drugs vary according to the types of cancer and according to the response or overall situation of the patient.

They can be administered daily or even each week or monthly. Generally, chemotherapy treatments are alternated with rest periods in order to allow the organism to produce healthy cells again and recover from the effect of the medication. Usually each cycle lasts three or four weeks.

Objectives of Chemotherapy

Depending on the type of cancer and its stage, chemotherapy may be used with different objectives:

  • To cure the cancer
  • To control the cancer
  • As palliative pain management

Chemotherapy as an adjuvant to another cancer treatment:

In many occasions the pharmacological treatment is complimented by the use of radiation therapy, or even used as to complement surgical intervention in the form of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (the drugs aim to shrink the tumour before it can be removed) or as adjuvant chemotherapy (when the therapy is used after surgery to kill of any possible malignant cells that may still be remaining in the body).

Molecular therapy against cancer

Molecular targeted therapy is quite a novel form of treatment which uses molecular drugs to identify and attack cancer cells without damaging  the healthy cells in the same way that standard drugs can.

The healthy cell is modified to become cancerous and is transformed into a tumour. Molecular treatments directly attack this process and block it. The cancer cells being blocked are called molecular targets.

They are often classified by the way they act on the cell or according to their target in the cell.

Administration of molecular therapy:

Molecular therapy can be given in these ways:

  • Orally
  • As intramuscular or intravenous injections
  • Through catheter, a flexible tube that is inserted into a large vein for the whole treatment process
  • Intrathecal Route ( intraspinal space)

Objectives of molecular targeted therapy:

Depending on the type of cancer and its stage, chemotherapy may be used with different objectives:

  • To cure the cancer
  • To control the cancer

Molecular therapy as an adjuvant to another cancer treatment:

On many occasions the molecular therapy is complemented by the use of radiation therapy, or even used as a complement to surgery to eliminate any malignant cell that might remain in the body.

> RADIATION ONCOLOGY

Radiation therapy is another form of cancer treatment, along with chemotherapy, oncological surgery, hormone therapy and immunotherapy.

It is used in approximately 70% of patients going through an oncological process.

This therapy uses high energy ionizing radiation generated by a linear accelerator, which is directed at the cancer. It is, therefore, a local and regional treatment.

The aim of radiation therapy is to destroy the cells ability to grow and multiply by working on both, the diseased cells (more sensitive to radiation) and also on the healthy cells (with have a greater chance of recovering from the damage).

The intention of the radiation therapy is to administer a proper dose to the diseased cells whilst causing the least possible damage on the healthy cells (this is called therapeutic index).

Objectives of oncological radiation:

  • Radical radiotherapy: seeks to heal the patient
  • Radiotherapy as a complement to surgery: its purpose is curative, either to decrease the tumour volume before surgery (preoperative) or to destroy the residual cells after surgery (postoperative)
  • Palliative radiation therapy: seeks to curb the growth of the tumour and control or alleviate possible symptoms such as pain and bleeding

Oncological radiation technology:

The Radiation Oncology Therapy Service within the Xanit Oncological Institute at Xanit provides next-generation technology using ionizing radiation treatments for oncology patients.

The Xanit Oncological Institute has a radiotherapy unit specialising in the treatment of brain tumours, and is able to offer patients the most innovative techniques and protocols in radiation oncology.

The techniques available are designed to ensure that their tumour will receive the appropriate dose whilst maintaining tolerable levels within the healthy organs. This will increase the chance of controlling the disease and, at the same time, reduce the onset of possible side effects.

Furthermore, these protocols and techniques guarantee a considerable reduction in the duration of the radiation treatments, thus resulting in improved comfort for the patient.

Our team of doctors, radiologists and technicians are highly qualified in the use of this technology and as a result are able to improve the survival rate, as well as minimising the usual undesirable side effects of conventional radiation therapy.

1- Information for your cancer treatment

Within 24 hours of receiving your request for information, we will contact you by e-mail or phone to assess your needs, and to answer your questions directly.

2- Diagnosis and selection of the cancer treatment

To begin with we recommend that you visit our Xanit Oncological Institute In order that the specialist can discuss your case, and decide which kind of oncological treatment best suits your particular requirements.

  • Medical records:
    We will send you the list of examinations and medical tests results that we will need to see during your first visit to Vithas Xanit International Hospital. In the event that our doctors deem necessary an additional screening test, this could be carried out during the same visit (except in the case of tests which require anaesthesia, in which case, they would need to be pre-booked).
    You may send us a copy of your medical information before planning you first visit.
  • Diagnosis:
    The Tumours Committee involved in the cancer diagnosis and treatment will study your medical records, the medical tests and check-ups, and establish a precise and reliable diagnosis.
    We will propose the recommended cancer treatment based on extensive scientific evidence.

We will provide you with complete information: process of treatment, programming and detailed quote.

3- Cancer treatment process

  • Treatment protocol
    The process and the programming of the treatment varies according to the type of cancer itself and depending on your particular case, as well as the proposals put forward by the Tumours Committee.
  • An assigned medical team
    Throughout the treatment process, you will always be treated by the same team of doctors

4- Your medical travel

Once your oncological treatment has been confirmed and accepted, our team of International Services at Vithas Xanit International Hospital will be at your disposal to assist you with the organising of your trip to Malaga and  will remain in constant contact with you.

5- Your arrival

Upon your arrival in Malaga, a representative of Vithas Xanit International Hospital will be waiting to greet you. We will help you organise your transfers and accompany you to our hospital.

6- Follow-up

  • Maintaining contact with you.
    Once you have been discharged our International Services Team will be at your disposal should you require further medical assistance and shall assist you with any administrative requirements you may have.
  • Informing your referring doctor.
    We shall provide you with a full medical report that you can give to your own doctor back home.
    We recommend that the follow-up care that will last five years, is performed in collaboration with your oncologist in your country of origin.

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