Targeted therapies do not work in the same way as traditional chemotherapy even though they are technically considered to be a form of chemotherapy. As the name suggests, targeted therapies work by finding a specific target on cancerous cells that they can attack or block to stop the cells from making new cancer cells. If your cancer type is known to have a target, it will be tested at the time of your biopsy or surgery to see if the target is present. Assuming it is, a targeted therapy may form part of your treatment plan. As these drugs have a targeted action to the cancer cell, the damage to normal cells is usually reduced, but this does not mean that targeted therapies are free of side-effects.