Your treatment choices depend on the type of bile duct cancer you have, test results, and the stage of the cancer. Other things to think about are if the cancer can be removed with surgery and your overall health. The goal of treatment may be to cure you, control the cancer, or help ease problems caused by the cancer. Talk with your healthcare team about your treatment choices, the goals of treatment, and what the risks and side effects may be.
Types of treatment for cancer are either local or systemic. Local treatments remove, destroy, or control cancer cells in one area. Surgery and radiation are local treatments. Systemic treatment is used to destroy or control cancer cells that may have traveled around your body. When taken by pill or injection, chemotherapy is a systemic treatment. Most people with bile duct cancer will be treated with surgery. Some will also need chemo or radiation after surgery. If surgery can’t be done, chemo or radiation may be the main treatment.
You may have just 1 treatment or a combination of treatments.
Talk with your healthcare providers about your treatment options. Make a list of questions. Think about the benefits and possible side effects of each option. Talk about your concerns with your healthcare provider before making a decision.