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Carcinoma of Unknown Primary Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - General Information About Carcinoma of Unknown Primary

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Sometimes, none of the tests can find the primary cancer site. In these cases, treatment may be based on what the doctor thinks is the most likely type of cancer.

Certain factors affect prognosis (chance of recovery).

The prognosis (chance of recovery) depends on the following:

  • Where the cancer began in the body and where it has spread.
  • The number of organs with cancer in them.
  • The way the tumor cells look when viewed under a microscope.
  • Whether the patient is male or female.
  • Whether the cancer has just been diagnosed or has recurred (come back).

For most patients with CUP, current treatments do not cure the cancer. Patients may want to take part in one of the many clinical trials being done to improve treatment. Clinical trials for CUP are taking place in many parts of the country. Information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

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WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

Last Updated: February 25, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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