There are several goals of cancer therapy. They include (1) cure, (2) control, and (3) relief from symptoms (palliative care). Remission is a medical term assigned to how cancer responds to therapy. Remission does not mean that cancer has been cured; however, cancer cannot be cured without remission.
Complete remission means that the cancer has responded well to treatment and has completely disappeared. Partial remission means that the number of cancer cells has decreased. Very specific tests are used to determine whether a cancer patient is in complete remission or partial remissions. Those tests include physical examinations, x-rays, CT scans, blood tests and PET scans.
Whether or not a patient is in remission, and whether the remission is complete or partial, influences the type of therapy prescribed. For example, a patient in partial remission may require neoadjuvant therapy (chemotherapy or radiation to shrink a large tumor), adjuvant chemotherapy (to kill stay cells) and radiation, while a patient in complete remission may need only adjuvant chemotherapy, or no treatment other than routine surveillance. It is important for doctors, including oncologists, to correctly monitor a patient's remission in order to prevent the progression of cancer and/or to prevent cancer recurrence.
At Bottar Leone, PLLC, our team of Syracuse cancer lawyers has decades of experience prosecuting claims concerning the failure to diagnose recurrent cancer. To discuss your case or concerns with a New York cancer misdiagnosis attorney, please complete a contact form or contact us at 1-800-336-5297 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org