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Treatment by Stage

This is only a guide.

Treatment of cancer of the vulva depends on the stage of the disease, the type of disease, and the patient's age and overall condition. It's different for everyone.

Standard treatment may be considered because of its effectiveness in patients in past studies, or participation in a clinical trial may be considered. Not all patients are cured with standard therapy and some standard treatments may have more side effects than are desired. For these reasons, clinical trials are designed to find better ways to treat cancer patients and are based on the most up-to-date information.


**Stage 0 Vulvar Cancer
Treatment may be one of the following:


1. Wide local excision or laser surgery or a combination of both.
2. Skinning vulvectomy.
3. Ointment containing a chemotherapy drug.


**Stage I Vulvar Cancer
Treatment may be one of the following:


1. Wide local excision.
2. Radical local excision plus taking out all nearby lymph nodes in the
groin and upper part of the thigh on the same side as the cancer.
3. Radical vulvectomy and removal of the lymph nodes in the groin on one or
both sides of the body.
4. Radiation therapy alone (in selected patients).


**Stage II Vulvar Cancer
Treatment may be one of the following:


1. Radical vulvectomy and removal of the lymph nodes in the groin on both
sides of the body. Radiation may be given to the pelvis following the
operation if cancer cells are found in the lymph nodes.
2. Radiation therapy alone (in selected patients).


**Stage III Vulvar Cancer
Treatment may be one of the following:


1. Radical vulvectomy and removal of the lymph nodes in the groin and upper
part of the thigh on both sides of the body. Radiation may be given to
the pelvis and groin following the operation if cancer cells are found in
the lymph nodes or only to the vulva if the tumor is large but has not
spread.
2. Radiation therapy and chemotherapy followed by radical vulvectomy and
removal of lymph nodes on both sides of the body.
3. Radiation therapy (in selected patients) with or without chemotherapy.

**Stage IV Vulvar Cancer
Treatment may be one of the following:


1. Radical vulvectomy and removal of the lower colon, rectum, or bladder
(depending on where the cancer has spread) along with the uterus, cervix,
and vagina (pelvic exoneration).
2. Radical vulvectomy followed by radiation therapy.
3. Radiation therapy followed by radical vulvectomy.
4. Radiation therapy (in selected patients) with or without chemotherapy, and possibly following surgery.


**Recurrent Vulvar Cancer
If the cancer has come back, treatment may be one of the following:


1. Wide local excision with or without radiation therapy.
2. Radical vulvectomy and removal of the lower colon, rectum, or bladder
(depending on where the cancer has spread) along with the uterus, cervix, and vagina (pelvic exenteration).
3. Radiation therapy plus chemotherapy with or without surgery.
4. Radiation therapy for local recurrences or to reduce symptoms such as pain, nausea, or abnormal body functions.
5. Clinical trials of new forms of therapy.

Note: This is only a sample of treatment routes on the journey.
There are also alternative therapies that can be combined with traditional.
The information provided herein should not be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.
A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions.

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