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What Factors Affect the Prognosis for Adenocarcinoma?

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  • Written By: C.B. Fox
  • Edited By: Angela B.
  • Last Modified Date: 22 September 2016
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A patient’s prognosis for adenocarcinoma depends on a number of factors. As with all forms of cancer, adenocarcinoma behaves differently for each patient and multiple treatment methods may need to be tried to find one that is effective. The stage of the adenocarcinoma, as well as its location, aggressiveness and the organ or system in which it is found, will all affect the prognosis given to a patient.

One of the main factors that affects the prognosis for adenocarcinoma is how advanced the cancer is when it is discovered. Cancers that are caught in the early stages are generally much easier to treat, both because there are fewer cancer cells that need to be destroyed and because there is more time for the medical team to develop an effective treatment plan. Adenocarcinoma that has reached its more advanced stages and has spread throughout the patient’s body carries a much poorer prognosis, because it is more difficult to treat cancer that is more widespread.

Another thing that can affect a patient’s prognosis for adenocarcinoma is the organ in which the cancer develops. Many of the internal organs can develop adenocarcinoma, and the prognosis for each of these organs is based on how difficult it is to treat cancer in the various parts of the body, including the lungs, liver and breasts. Adenocarcinoma of the lungs, for example, tends to be more difficult to treat than adenocarcinoma of the breasts.

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The aggressiveness of the cancerous cells and their resistance to treatment also affect a patient’s prognosis for adenocarcinoma. Cancer cells may respond well to traditional treatments, such as radiation or chemotherapy, or may resist the treatments and continue to multiply in the patient’s body. Tumors that grow quickly may also be more difficult to treat because there is a limited amount of time to destroy the cancer before it spreads to other areas.

The specific location of the tumor, including whether it is in a critical organ, can also determine a patient’s prognosis for adenocarcinoma. Tumors that can be easily removed make it easier to take the cancer out of a patient’s body, and pairing surgery with other traditional treatments can cause many cases of cancer to go into remission. Small tumors that are confined to a small part of the patient’s body are easier to remove through surgery than larger tumors that have spread throughout an organ or system.

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