Carolinas HealthCare System

Levine Cancer Institute offers patients in the Carolinas and beyond access to the most advanced care for esophageal cancer. Radiation oncologists, gastroenterologists, pathologists and other specialists work together to ensure each patient is presented with an individualized cancer treatment plan, for the best outcome possible.

As a patient of Levine Cancer Institute, part of Carolinas HealthCare System, you have the benefit of collaboration between some of the top minds in cancer care; twice a month our experts gather to discuss each patient case, sharing treatment recommendations.

Several treatment options are available for patients with esophageal cancer. Your physician will determine the right treatment for you based on a number of factors. Some patients’ treatment plans may use one or many therapies, including:

  • Surgery. In many cases, surgery is the best option for patients with esophageal cancer. Patients at Levine Cancer Institute benefit from our surgeons’ expertise in minimally invasive techniques, allowing for quicker, easier recovery. Sometimes, tumors can be completely removed in what’s called an esophagectomy (removal of cancerous portions of the esophagus and nearby lymph nodes), or an esophagogastrectomy (in which part of the stomach is removed as well).
  • Chemotherapy and radiation. Some patients will need to undergo these treatments first to shrink the tumor and pave the way for a successful surgery. In other patients, chemotherapy and radiation are used following surgery to help prevent cancer from returning. Surgery is not always possible, however, and chemotherapy or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation is then used as the primary treatment or to relieve cancer symptoms.
  • Feeding tube and stents. Because swallowing can be difficult for those with esophageal cancer, a feeding tube can be used before surgery to ensure the patient receives the proper nutrients. All patients will have a feeding tube placed following surgery to allow the esophagus to heal and rest until food is tolerated. Stents are an option to help keep the esophagus open.

For more information on the treatment of esophageal cancer at Levine Cancer Institute, call 980-442-2000 or 800-804-9376.