New Hope for Rare Cancers

While any cancer diagnosis is difficult, rare cancers can be particularly challenging for patients, their loved ones, and their doctors.

That’s because for many rare cancers, there is little research about what causes them, how to detect them early, or the best way to treat them.  As a result, rare cancers can be hard to diagnose quickly or accurately, treatment options may be limited, and information and support resources can be scarce.

At MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper, we’re changing all that.

With the launch of our comprehensive Rare Cancers Program, we’ve brought together an unparalleled depth and breadth of rare-cancer expertise. This means you have one-stop access to an entire team of rare-cancer experts who are up to date on the latest research (we’re even conducting some of it), the most accurate diagnostic methods, and the most advanced treatment options—right here in South Jersey.

Plus, our Rare Cancers Program offers a wealth of current information and compassionate support resources, all focused on giving you a high level of personalized, attentive care and guidance. 

What are rare cancers? 

A cancer is considered rare when fewer than six people in 100,000 are diagnosed each year. Altogether, however, rare cancers are more common than you may think—with one in five cancers diagnosed in the U.S. considered a rare cancer.

To learn more about how the Rare Cancers Program at MD Anderson at Cooper can help you or a loved one, please call 855.MDA.COOPER (855.632.2667).

The rare cancers we see

Our program sees the full range of rare cancers: 

Oral cavity and pharynx
•    Lip
•    Tongue
•    Salivary gland
•    Floor of mouth
•    Gum & other mouth tissue
•    Nose, nasal cavity and middle ear
•    Larynx
•    Nasopharynx
•    Tonsil
•    Oropharynx
•    Hypopharynx

Brain and central nervous system
•    Meninges
•    Brain
•    Spinal cord, cranial nerves and other parts of CNS
•    Pituitary gland
•    Pineal gland

Digestive system
•    Small intestine
•    Anus, anal canal, and anorectum
•    Gallbladder
•    Retroperitoneum, peritoneum, omentum and mesentery

Respiratory system
•    Trachea, mediastinum

Gynecologic cancers
•    Vagina
•    Vulva

Genitourinary system
•    Penis
•    Testis
•    Ureter

Orthopaedic cancers
•    Soft tissue sarcomas
•    Bone sarcomas

Cancer and Pregnancy 
•    Cancer during pregnancy
•    Pregnancy in cancer survivors

Rare Breast Cancer 
•    Male breast cancer
•    Inflammatory breast cancer

Our approach to diagnosing and treating rare cancers

At MD Anderson at Cooper, we take a multidisciplinary team approach to diagnosing and treating rare cancers. 

This team includes medical, radiation and surgical oncologists, pathologists, diagnostic imaging experts, and other specialists in specific types of cancer, including orthopaedic, gastrointestinal, head and neck (including ear, nose and throat), neurologic, genitourinary, gynecologic, breast, esophageal and melanoma.

When appropriate, we also call on the cancer experts at our clinical partner, MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, one of the nation’s leading cancer hospitals, who have vast experience caring for patients with rare cancers. Working together, we determine an accurate diagnosis as quickly as possible and develop a treatment plan tailored to your unique needs. 

Comprehensive supportive-care services, too

In addition to today’s most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment resources, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper’s Rare Cancer Program offers a wealth of supportive-care services for your mind, body and spirit, including:

  • Integrative oncology
  • Complementary medicine therapies
  • Nutrition counseling
  • Behavioral medicine
  • Palliative care
  • Financial counseling
  • Social work 

Why choose MD Anderson at Cooper’s Rare Cancers Program

With MD Anderson at Cooper’s Rare Cancers Program, you have access to an unparalleled level of advanced capabilities from one of the nation’s leading cancer centers, including:

  • Molecular profiling—tests that provide very specific information about the molecular and genetic makeup of a tumor—that helps to identify rare cancers more precisely and more quickly
  • The latest targeted therapies—a newer type of cancer treatment that uses drugs or other substances to more precisely identify and attack cancer cells—giving your more treatment options than ever before 
  • Ongoing research and clinical trials that offer you access to novel treatments before they are widely available anyplace else
  • A dedicated rare-cancers team that integrates the latest scientific knowledge and expertise in one highly coordinated program focused on your individual situation

To make an appointment with a physician who specializes in rare cancers, call us at 855.MDA.COOPER (855.632.2667).