Esophageal Cancer Treatments

Your cancer care team will tailor your treatment for esophageal cancer to your unique needs. Your treatment will also depend on the stage of the esophageal cancer when you are diagnosed, as well as your overall condition and the symptoms you have.

Your Esophageal Cancer Treatment Team

Northwestern Medicine offers specialty care for esophageal cancer from a multidisciplinary team in world-class, patient-centered facilities.

Our esophageal cancer team includes medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons, advanced practice nurses and a comprehensive support team.

Our highly skilled team includes:

  • Specialized physicians
  • Advanced practice nurses
  • Physician assistants
  • Social workers
  • Registered nurses
  • Registered dietitians
  • Financial counselors
  • Survivorship navigators

Cancer Care Closer to Home

Addressing cancer is a multistep journey that may require many visits. During treatment, you need to focus your energy on getting healthy, not getting to the next appointment. That’s why treatment and support services at Northwestern Medicine are conveniently located throughout Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, so you can get quick access to all the expertise and support you need, close to home.

Treatments for esophageal cancer may include a combination of the below:

  • Surgery: If esophageal cancer has not spread to other organs, an esophagectomy is the primary treatment. This surgery is often used along with chemotherapy or radiotherapy before surgery.
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy uses anti-cancer drugs to eliminate cancer cells throughout your whole body.
  • Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy uses high-energy rays to eliminate or shrink cancer cells.
  • Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy uses treatments that trigger the immune system to fight the cancer.
  • Targeted therapy: Antibodies can be used to target surface proteins on cancer cells to eliminate tumors.
  • Endoscopic resection and ablation: This procedure uses an endoscope to remove or get rid of cancer cells on or near the inner lining of the esophagus.