Our surgeons specialize in a minimally-invasive procedure called radiofrequency ablation (Barrx™), which uses an orally inserted endoscope to deliver an electrical current that heats up and destroys the cancerous tissue. This procedure is also effective in treating precancerous cells found in the esophagus as well as Barrett’s esophagus.
For early stage esophageal cancers, we also perform endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR), which uses the endoscope to remove small tumors from the esophagus, without the need for an incision. These are outpatient procedures and patients can go home on the same day.
Chemotherapy – the use of anticancer medicines – includes a wide range of drugs to treat primary and metastatic esophageal cancer. Additionally, targeted therapy drugs can attack esophageal cancer cells without impacting normal tissues and organs.
Drug therapy can also enhance the effectiveness of surgery or radiation therapy, by shrinking the tumor before the procedure and making it easier to remove (neoadjuvant therapy), or given after the procedure to minimize the chance of recurrence (adjuvant therapy.)
At City of Hope, patients have access to both both standard drug regimens as well as newly developed drugs (or drug combinations) through an extensive program of clinical trials.
As part of the treatment team, a
will evaluate the patient’s cancer, health and other factors, so that the drug therapy, if appropriate, can be tailored to the patient throughout the continuum of care.