Treatment of esophageal cancer in Germany
Esophageal cancer is a malignant formation from epithelial cells of the corresponding organ. It is characterized by the late diagnostics and negative prognosis. Incidence of esophageal cancer mainly depends on the eating habits of the different nationalities representatives. High frequency of this pathology is registered in Japan, France, Brazil, Kazakhstan and accounts from 10 to 30 cases per 100.000 persons a year. Meanwhile, this number is just 2 cases per 100.000 persons a year in Mexico, Israel, and Armenia.
Esophageal cancer – Diagnostics
Esophageal cancer is hard to identify on the basis of symptoms only, as it doesn’t have pathognomonic symptoms (i.e, such symptoms that may occur only in the case of this disease). Basic instrumental and laboratory methods are:
- Chromoesophagoscopy is used for the early diagnostics of esophageal cancer. Its mucous coat is stained with Lugol's iodine solution or methylene blue. Healthy cells accumulate the coloring material and the pathological ones (cancer, scars, erosions) remain uncolored.
- Exfoliative cytological diagnostics is assigned to the patients in some regions with high incidence of esophageal cancer. Mucous membrane scraping is taken with the help of special brush for cytological examination.
- Radiography is the first method of the research which is indicated if esophageal cancer is suspected. Radiography is an X-ray with contrasting agent (barium sulfate). It helps to assess the esophagus patency and reveal the tumor.
- Fibroesophagoscopy is a basic diagnostics technique which is performed after the X-ray. This is an endoscopic examination which implies the instrumental intervention into the esophagus. It helps not only to assess the tumor location and character of its growth, but also to take biological material for the morphological examination.
- Imaging methods are CT, MRI, and transesophageal ultrasound examination. These techniques are used to assess spreading of the pathological process.
- Laparoscopy is indicated if tumor process is disseminated. The procedure helps to detect metastases and identify tumor foci in the abdomen. Laparoscopy is necessary to identify the appropriate volume of surgical intervention and to choose the therapeutic tactics.
Best clinics for the esophageal cancer diagnostics in Germany:
Academic Hospital Sachsenhausen Frankfurt am Main
Charite University Hospital Berlin
University Hospital Frankfurt am Main
Esophageal cancer – Treatment
Basic treatment methods of esophageal cancer are surgery and radiation therapy. If cancer is resectable, treatment is started with a surgery. Volume of the intervention is identified according to the prevalence of the pathological process.
The following surgical methods can be used:
- Subtotal esophageal resection (removal of the organ’s large part)
- Extirpation of esophagus with lymph nodes
Sometimes, specialists perform expanded operations, including the removal of other organs’ fragments (e.g. stomach). At the same time the esophagus plastic repair is performed. To restore an esophagus doctors use small or large intestine fragments.
Radiation therapy is indicated in combination with the surgery, as well as an independent treatment technique (for weak patients, if tumor is unresectable or a patient refuses to undergo a surgery). Radiation can be distant or contact (brachytherapy).
Chemotherapy doesn’t have significant effect on the survival of patients, if it is used by itself. That’s why it’s only applied as an addition to the basic treatment methods.
Targeted therapy is rarely performed. It is effective only for adenocarcinoma treatment, while esophageal cancer is a squamous cell cancer in 95% of cases. Targeted therapy effects the cancerous cells but doesn’t touch healthy tissues. Drug Herceptin is applied for treatment of adenocarcinoma of the esophagus.
Best clinics for the esophageal cancer treatment in Germany:
Academic Hospital Sachsenhausen Frankfurt am Main
Gamma Knife and Radiotherapy Center Krefeld
University Hospital of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich (LMU)
Esophageal cancer – Rehabilitation
Most patients require rehabilitation after the treatment of complex oncological diseases. It includes the following aspects:
- Prevention of complications that may occur as a result of treatment. It can be pneumonia, lymphostasis, thromboembolic or infectious complications.
- Restoration of general health. The elimination of the consequences after surgeries and chemotherapy is carried out. The functions of internal organs are restored with the help of various medical and rehabilitation measures.
- Restoration of occupation. A person must not just stay alive. He must have physical and intellectual capabilities, which are sufficient for employment.
- Psychological support. First of all, it is required for patients, whose occupational performance was harmed because of the disease. Patients with deterioration of appearance also will benefit from psychological help.
- Restoration of appearance. If necessary, you can use surgical and other methods in Germany to restore appearance defects caused by cancer. For example, to carry out the reconstruction of the breast.
- Social and domestic rehabilitation. A person with reduced workability is trained to act in the society and perform everyday tasks in new conditions.
In German clinics, rehabilitation is carried out in a comprehensive manner. The patients are provided with qualitative care here. Doctors' monitoring and conservative treatment allow to avoid complications, which usually happen after treatment of oncological diseases. Psychotherapy, physiotherapy and physical therapy are actively used in Germany.
Specialists in different medical spheres take part in the rehabilitation process. These are massage therapists, speech therapists, specialists in physiotherapy exercises, physiotherapists. Social and occupational therapy is carried out, as well. If necessary, people are taught how to eat properly, take care of a colostomy or urostomy, etc.
In Germany, rehabilitation is carried out with the maximum level of comfort for the patient. A person feels the results quite quickly and it improves his motivation and promotes further recovery.
Best clinics for oncological rehabilitation in Germany:
Max Grundig Clinic Buehl
1412.43Per daySee More
Here you can find the cost of treatment for this disease at the German University Hospitals. Leave a request and we will provide a free consultation with a doctor and will start organizing the whole treatment process.
The program includes the following:
- Issuing of an invitation for getting a visa for treatment as quick as possible
- Fixing an appointment at a time convenient for you
- Preliminary organization of a comprehensive examination and discussion of the forthcoming treatment plan
- Arranging transfer from the airport to the hospital and back to the airport
- Provision of interpreting services and services of a personal medical coordinator
- If necessary, assistance in the organization of further surgical treatment
- Provision of a medical insurance against treatment complications covering up to 200,000 euro
- Preparation and translation of medical records and recommendations from the hospital
- Assistance in the subsequent communication with your attending physician, including consultations on repeated X-ray images through the unique medical document management system E-doc