New cases of invasive cancer in the United States occur among nearly 1.5 million people annually. In 2007, more than 1,500 people died per day with this diagnosis. Cancer is responsible for nearly one in every four deaths reported in the country. Enormous amounts of money and research have been, and are being spent, in an attempt to improve these numbers. While prevention and early detection remain the key to long-term success, treatment in the neo-adjuvant, adjuvant and metastatic settings still centre around two main treatment modalities - radiation therapy and chemotherapy. This article will review the advances that have been made in both areas that are making these treatments more precise and convenient, as well as less toxic, for the patient. In the field of radiation therapy this involves the development of new therapy planning and delivery systems, such as intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), and positron emission and computed tomography, PET-CT. Chemotherapy has also evolved with the development of targeted chemotherapy for the treatment of specific malignancies as well as improved supportive care agents which allow for the administration of dose-dense chemotherapy when appropriate.
Heron, D., Shogan, J., & Mucenski, J. (2009). Innovations in chemotherapy and radiation therapy: Implications and opportunities for the Asia-Pacific Rim. Biomedical Imaging and Intervention Journal, 4(3). https://doi.org/10.2349/biij.4.3.e40