Cancer treatment

Treatment for cancer can be a complex process. It’s important that you take time to learn about your options and understand what’s right for you. Our care teams are committed to addressing all of your questions or concerns. Decisions about cancer treatment often depend on factors such as the stage of the cancer, the size or location of the tumor or growth, the risk of the cancer coming back in the future (recurrence) and your general health.

Types of cancer treatment

Below are some types of cancer treatment that are commonly recommended by our cancer care teams. Treatment plans sometimes include a combination of these methods, depending on the type or stage of your cancer.

cancer surgery


Surgery is a procedure to remove the cancer from your body.

Read about cancer surgery



Chemotherapy is medicine given by mouth, injection or through an IV (intravenous) line to destroy cancer cells throughout your whole body.

Read about chemotherapy

radiation therapy

Radiation therapy

Radiation therapy uses high-energy radiation (X-rays) to shrink or destroy cancer cells in your body.

Read about radiation

targeted therapy circle

Targeted therapy

Targeted therapy uses medicines designed to treat specific features of cancer cells and stop them from growing and spreading.

Read about targeted therapy

clinical trial

Clinical trials

Clinical trials (sometimes referred to as cancer treatment studies) are newer approaches aimed at improving the prevention, detection and treatment of cancer. If you’re interested in being part of a clinical trial, talk with your medical oncologist to learn more.

Find clinical trials

Keep your daily schedule as normal as possible. But be sure to listen to your body, and if you need to slow down, then slow down, said Ploen. And take a friend to chemo treatments just to sit with you. I thought I could do it on my own and was so glad after each treatment that someone went with me.

Rehabilitation – before, during and after treatment

rehabilitation after cancer treatment

Cancer rehabilitation benefits include building your overall strength, reducing pain and discomfort, regaining function, and much more. Rehabilitation can also help you feel better from side effects of cancer treatment such as:

  • balance issues
  • cognitive problems (such as memory, judgment, thinking and making decisions)
  • fatigue (feeling very tired)
  • chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage in the hands or feet)
  • gait dysfunction (problems walking)
  • problems from bone metastasis (cancer that spreads to the bones)
  • lymphedema (swelling of arm, leg, torso, breast or face after radiation or removal of lymph nodes)

It does not matter where you are in your care, members of your cancer rehabilitation care team will meet and work with you based on your specific goals and needs. Together, you and your cancer rehabilitation care team will make a safe and appropriate therapy plan.

For more information, please talk with a member of your health care team.

pregnant couple following fertility preservation after cancer treatment

Fertility preservation options

Cancer treatments can affect your fertility. Now is the time to talk with your cancer care team about ways to preserve your fertility if you want to have children in the future. Learn more about fertility options with cancer.

A spectrum of support

Clinical treatment is just one of the ways we provide expert care for people and families living with cancer. From money matters to holistic healing programs, our team is committed to serving you as a whole person—body, mind and spirit.

cancer support financial services

Financial services

Patient account representatives can answer your questions about hospital bills or insurance coverage. They also can help you access Allina Health Financial Assistance Services.

Learn more about financial services support

nurse navigator

Nurse navigators

A nurse navigator is a registered nurse who will support, educate and guide you through your course of treatment.

Learn more about oncology nurse navigators

cancer support through nutrition therapy

Nutrition therapy

Registered dietitians can assess your food needs and help you set goals to improve eating and manage weight.

Talk with your cancer care provider about the variety of dietitian and nutrition services that are available.

cancer support groups

Support groups

Support groups are designed for people and families affected by cancer. These groups provide a place to connect with others and share thoughts, feelings and ask questions.

Search events and classes

View cancer support groups

cancer support through holistic medicine

Penny George® Institute for Health and Healing

The Penny George Institute helps you improve your well-being by focusing on your whole being—mind, body and spirit.

Learn more about the Penny George® Institute for Health and Healing

cancer support via advanced care planning

Advance care planning

Advance care planning is the process of giving information to others about your health care choices in case illness or injury prevents you from telling them yourself.

Learn more about advance care planning

cancer palliative care meeting

Palliative care

Palliative care is for anyone who is in any stage of an advanced illness. This is care that provides relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both you and your family.

Learn more about palliative care

meet social workers for oncology

Social worker

An oncology social worker is available to support you and your family during your treatment and recovery.

Know what to expect

A cancer diagnosis can change your life in an instant. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed, confused or anxious about what to do next. That’s why we make it easy to find the information and resources you need at this difficult time.