The overall aim of treatment is to bring about a complete remission. Treatment approaches for blood cancers may include chemotherapy, radiation oncology, stem cell or marrow transplantation, or immunotherapy. For maximum effectiveness, we provide each patient with an individual treatment plan, which includes standard care and/or clinical trials.
Some of the blood cancers we are fighting are:
Lymphoma: Lymphoma is the most common blood cancer and the third most common cancer of childhood. The annual incidence of lymphomas has nearly doubled over the last three years reaching 62,000 Americans. However, there have been rapid advances in the treatment of this disease and 80 percent of patients with Hodgkin's lymphoma can be cured.
Leukemia: Leukemia is a malignant cancer of the bone marrow and blood. Approximately 35,000 patients are diagnosed with leukemia annually. The relative adult five-year survival rate has more than tripled in the past 45 years, qualified by age, gender, race and type of leukemia. The leukemia death rate for children 0-14 years of age in the United States has declined 60 percent over the past three decades, due to modern treatment advances.
Myeloma: Myeloma is a disease of another blood cell, the plasma cell. Annually, approximately 16,000 new patients are diagnosed with myeloma. Overall survival in patients with myeloma has shown a modest improvement since the 1970s, however, the mortality rate for people of African descent is more than double the rate for Caucasians. We are a member of the Multiple Myeloma Consortium and are exploring novel treatment approaches to this cancer.
Our physicians in medical oncology, hematology, neuro-oncology and radiation oncology meet regularly to discuss patient care and to develop a comprehensive treatment plan unique for each patient. Additionally, patients have access to caregivers who help them cope with the physical, emotional and psychological issues related to these cancers. Advanced practice registered nurses and social workers assist with education, general information and practical issues of travel and accommodations.
Stem Cell Transplant
In an effort to destroy abnormal cancerous cells in leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma, stem cell transplants are often used. Ours is the only program in Connecticut offering allogeneic transplant, a transplant using compatible donor stem cells. Read more
Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma
There are a variety of treatment options available for cutaneous T and B-cell lymphoma and many patients are able to live relatively normal lives during and following therapy. Early diagnosis, cutting-edge treatment and novel therapies provide a significant benefit to patients with cutaneous lymphomas at Smilow Cancer Hospital and throughout the world.