What Is the New Cancer Medicine, and How Effective Is It?

After a clinical colorectal cancer drug trial, 12 people were found to be cancer-free, giving the rest of the world hope for a cure. What is the drug? How effective is it and will it be used to treat other types of cancers as well? 一 All your questions will be answered in this blog.

Cancer is the biggest cause of death worldwide, with approximately 10 million fatalities in 2020, accounting for nearly one in every six deaths. Breast, lung, colon, bone, rectum, and prostate cancers are the most frequent cancers reported. As a result, the news of a cancer medicine that cures cancer has been the talk of the town for the past few days! 

Let’s take a deeper look at the drug trial and the patients involved to better understand how this cancer medicine works. 

Cancer Drug Trial

A small medical trial run by researchers from New York’s Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center resulted in every patient who was treated going into remission effectively.

The drug used is called Dostarlimab and is offered under the brand name Jemperli. It is an immunotherapy drug used to treat endometrial cancer. But this was the first clinical trial to see if it might also be used to treat rectal cancer tumours. Participants were given a dose of Dostarlimab every three weeks for six months, with the intention that they would need to follow up with chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery. However, researchers discovered that the  cancer medicine had completely vanished, being undetectable by physical exam, endoscopy, PET or MRI scans, in every case simply by using the experimental cancer medication.

Participants of the Cancer Drug Trial

The 12 patients in the study had tumours with a genetic mutation known as mismatch repair deficit (MMRd), which is found in a subset of about 5% to 10% of rectal cancer patients. Patients with these tumours are less responsive to chemotherapy and radiation therapies, necessitating surgical removal of their tumours. 

According to the latest reports, the ongoing study has resulted in the disappearance of tumours in at least 14 individuals and counting, with no significant side effects. There was no need for conventional therapies such as radiation, surgery, or chemotherapy, and the disease has not reappeared in any of the patients. 

How Does the New Cancer Medicine Work? 

According to the US National Cancer Institute, this immunotherapy focuses on proteins called checkpoints, which are produced by both immune system cells and cancer cells. Immune checkpoints, which prohibit aggressive immune responses, can occasionally block immune cells from destroying cancer cells successfully.

Dostarlimab is a checkpoint inhibitor, which means it unbolts an immune cell’s brakes, allowing it to recognise and fight cancer cells. MMRd cells, which have so many mutations, appear especially weird when the brakes are removed from immune cells. As a result, the immune cells launch a considerably more powerful attack to completely eradicate the cancer cells.

Will this Medication be Available to Other Colorectal Cancer Patients? 

It’s unclear whether the outcomes of this cancer drug trial will be applicable to a larger group of people with rectal cancer. Future trials will aim for heterogeneity in age, underlying illnesses, and tumour size to provide more information about whether patients might benefit from this immunotherapy or not.

Hence, although this trial has shown remarkable results, more extensive research and data are needed for it to be generalized to everyone with rectal cancer. 

In conclusion, this achievement in cancer research could lead to much significant advancement in the treatment of cancer patients in the coming years. However, for the time being, if you or someone in your family is at risk of cancer, make sure to visit the hospital to get regular screenings, and live a healthy lifestyle that excludes any risk factors assisted with carcinogens.

Book your appointment for a screening today at Ayu Health Hospital or call us at +91 – 6366 100 800 for a consultation.

Bone Cancer: Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatments 

Bone cancer is often misdiagnosed because the most common symptom – pain – is mistakenly attributed to an injury or exhaustion. But fret not, our intention isn’t to alarm you, but to raise awareness. Knowing the general symptoms of bone cancer, as well as its causes and treatment, will help you gain a thorough understanding of what goes on within your body. It will also help you have a detailed conversation with your primary care physician about your condition and find answers to questions like “ is bone cancer treatable and how is it managed?”.

In this regard, let’s talk about the symptoms of bone cancer, and how it’s diagnosed and treated, among other matters, to increase your awareness about this rare, yet dreadful affliction.

Let’s start with a basic understanding of bone cancer.

What is bone cancer? 

It is a rather uncommon type of cancer that develops when cells in the bone marrow grow out of control. There are two types of bone cancer: primary bone cancer and secondary (metastasized) bone cancer.

Primary bone cancer/sarcoma starts in the bone. This type of cancer is further classified into two: bone sarcoma and soft tissue sarcoma. 

Bone sarcoma: 

  • Osteosarcoma: Cancer that usually develops in growing bones
  • Chondrosarcoma: Cancer of the cartilage cells
  • Ewing sarcoma: Cancer that can develop in any bone
  • Chordoma: Cancer of tissue found inside the spine

Soft tissue sarcoma includes all types of cancer that develop in tissues that support, connect, surround and protect the organs of the body. This includes fat, muscles, nerves, fibrous tissue, tendons, ligaments, etc. 

Secondary bone cancer/Osteoporosis develops elsewhere and spreads to the bone. The most commonly affected bones are the skull, ribs, pelvis, spine, humerus (arms) and femur (legs).

Each type of cancer shows different symptoms but there are a few common ones that you can look for and discuss with your doctor. 

Signs and symptoms of bone cancer 

The most prevalent sign is pain. Other common symptoms include 一 

  • Tenderness 
  • Swelling 
  • Reduced mobility near the affected area 
  • Weak bones that easily break 

If you suspect any of these symptoms, speak to your doctor or book an appointment with the best oncology surgeons at Ayu Health Hospitals. 

Bone cancer diagnosis and treatment 

When there’s suspicion of bone cancer your doctor might order any of the following tests to confirm the diagnosis of the type of cancer. 

  • Biopsy
  • Blood tests
  • Imaging tests
  • Bone scan
  • CAT scan
  • MRI 
  • X-rays 

Your treatment options, as well as whether or not your bone cancer is treatable, are influenced by the type of cancer you have, its stage, your overall health, and your lifestyle preferences.

Some common bone cancer treatment options include:

  • Surgery 
  • Cryosurgery 
  • Chemotherapy 
  • Radiation therapy 

If you have any questions about your treatment or the terms your healthcare providers are using, don’t hesitate. Ask questions and address all your concerns as and when required. 

If you’re worried about what this would all cost you, fret not, bone cancer treatment cost in India is covered by several health insurance schemes. Healthcare facilities like Ayu Health Hospital have partnered with over 100 health insurance providers across India to provide quick cashless services for all treatments. For more information call us at +91 6366100800 or book an appointment. 

5 Things to look for Best Hospital for Cancer Treatment

In India, an estimated 2.25 million people are living with cancer. Being told you have cancer is dreadful and frightening. But it is important that you don’t lose hope and fight it with everything you have.  

It is critical that everyone, including family, friends, and medical personnel, provide the necessary support to help the patient get through these difficult times. Once diagnosed with cancer, the patient and their family will have to make many important decisions. Choosing the best hospital for cancer treatment is one of them. 

India is one of the most preferred locations for medical tourism. Many people from around the world fly to India in order to receive the most effective cancer treatment. However, sorting through the vast pool of hospitals and cancer centers in a city to locate the best one might be challenging. 

Therefore, we’ve put up a list of things to check for while browsing through cancer centers to ensure you get the best treatment available.

Quality Patient Care Plans 

The best cancer centers are hospitals with specialized patient care teams that assist patients and their families in discussing all the stages of cancer and determining the best, individualized treatment plan for each patient. These plans might include standard treatments, clinical trials, palliative/supportive care, hospice/home care, etc. Therefore, always keep an eye out for cancer centers with above-par clinical care systems. 

Access To a Full Range of Services 

Clinical service departments that include facilities, equipment, skilled personnel, and policies and procedures to deliver diagnostic treatment, and supportive care are a must. A dependable cancer care center will integrate all these services in the most effective way possible to offer timely and appropriate cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Quality Management 

Hospitals with better management have better outcomes. When trained and licensed clinicians, as well as administrative and support staff, are available at all times, better quality care will be offered. One example of this is Ayu Health Hospital’s, Ayu Mitra. Every patient is assisted by an Ayu Mitra: A person who provides clear information on the procedure, hospital stay, and any other questions that the patient has.

Covid Safety Protocol 

Finding cancer centers that adhere to strict criteria in order to protect and not jeopardize their patients’ safety is crucial. Limiting the number of visitors, enabling virtual consultations, mandatory entry screening, etc. are some of the many necessary precautions a cancer hospital must be taking. If these measures aren’t being implemented strictly and thoroughly, it’s best to find another hospital that does. 

Referrals and Reviews 

The most dependable source of information is word of mouth. Hearing what others have to say about a doctor can help you get an idea of how they practice medicine. Even more so, if your primary care physician has referred you to them. Take time to research the doctors, medical, and management staff by asking family, friends, and other healthcare providers who are familiar with the center. 

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with cancer, finding a doctor and a treatment center for cancer care is essential to receiving the best possible treatment. Ayu Health Hospitals has the best hospitals in Bangalore for cancer treatment. Equipment, technical support services, supplies, and materials management, patient transport services, fire safety, radiation protection, etc. are some of the many areas we excel in. To consult with our top oncologists visit our website or call us at +91 6366 100 800 to book an appointment. 


References

Introducing Ayu Health. – Ayu Health

https://blog.ayu.health/2020/01/14/introducing-ayu-health/

Cancer Services and the Comprehensive Cancer Center – Cancer – NCBI Bookshelf

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK343637/

Advanced_Cancer_Care_Planning.pdf

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Precautions | MD Anderson Cancer Center

https://www.mdanderson.org/patients-family/becoming-our-patient/planning-for-care/coronavirus-protections.html

8 Tips for Choosing an Oncologist

https://www.healthgrades.com/right-care/cancer/8-tips-for-choosing-an-oncologist

Cancer Statistics – India Against Cancer

http://cancerindia.org.in/cancer-statistics/ 

Coping with Cancer During the Covid Pandemic

Managing cancer is a big deal. More so, during covid times. Getting tests done, visiting the doctor, getting the required treatment be it radiation or chemotherapy, everything involves going to the hospital. 

The Covid pandemic has brought life to a standstill. One day, everyone was busily heading off to the office, meeting friends, attending events and then, suddenly everything just stopped. Our lives depended on us not stepping out. 

Covid-19 causes damage to the respiratory system. More importantly, it spreads very quickly from one person to another and can be life-threatening for people with low immunity. Usually, the treatment procedure for cancer lowers the immunity of a person. So, exposure to coronavirus is definitely riskier for patients with cancer. 

Tips to cope with Cancer

In this situation, what should one choose? Going to the hospital to get the treatment done or stay home and be safe. Well, this is a unique situation to be in. So, you will need to try and find unique solutions to the problem. Here are some tips that can help you answer this million-dollar question. 

  1. Covid vaccination

You can choose to get yourself vaccinated against the coronavirus. Though there is limited research on how the vaccine effects cancer patients, the danger of contacting the virus is far higher. It is seen that covid affects cancer patients more severely. So, speak to your doctor about taking the vaccination and if you are a good candidate to take the vaccination, please go ahead and take it at the earliest. 

  1. Doctor Visits

Having cancer involves frequent doctor visits. The doctor will want to see you assess your condition and suggest tests or analyze your test results and suggest the future course of action. 

During the pandemic, however, it is best for you to stay away from hospitals as much as you can. 

All most all doctors are now available online. You can share your test reports through email or other social media channels to avoid meeting in person. Once your doctor checks the reports, you can meet him/her on a video call or a telephonic call to understand what is to be done next. 

  1. Diagnostic tests and Imaging

This is an important part of treating cancer. If you are just starting out your treatment or you are already taking a course to tackle cancer, undergoing tests is important. Doctors suggest treatment options based on the tests. Tests also show how your body is reacting to the suggested treatment.

If the doctor has prescribed tests like blood work or urine tests etc, these can be done at your home. Book an appointment with a phlebotomist and he/she will visit your home to collect your sample. This is a far safer way to get your tests done as you will not be exposed to too many people. 

If the doctor has prescribed imaging tests that need you to go to a clinic or a hospital, you should try to book the first slot in the day. This means, no one else has used the equipment before you. Also, it is likely that if you are early, there are far lesser people in the hospital/clinic compared to rush hours which usually start from 10 AM. 

  1. Treatment options

Cancer involves different types of treatments based on the patient’s age, the kind of cancer and the stage it is in. If the cancer is still in the very early stages and treatment can be kept on hold for some time you can opt for this route. 

Sometimes, the treatment involves taking chemotherapy, which is mostly done by injecting the drug through your veins. In this case, you can ask your doctor if you can temporarily switch to oral medication. 

In cases where the drugs need to be given intravenously, you can check if you can have a nurse at home who can administer the drugs. 

Minimum exposure to people is what you should aim for.

So, discuss frankly with your doctor as to how you can minimize going to the hospital during these trying times. 

Even after taking all of these precautions, it is possible that you get exposed to the virus. In such cases, it is best to keep cancer treatment on hold or postpone it. The reason for this is that, in most cases, cancer treatment involves taking immunosuppressants. Suppressing the immunity system while the body is fighting the virus can turn out to be extremely dangerous. 

All in all, you just need to remember two things:

  1. Stay away from crowds and stay at home as much a possible. 
  2. Discuss how your treatment can be made remote so that you avoid contact with people

In these unusual times, Ayu Health Hospitals has supported patients through and through to get them the best that healthcare can offer. From vaccinations to online consultations with well-experienced doctors to maintaining the highest levels of sanitization, everything is being done. 

Some of the best-known oncologists are associated with Ayu Health Hospitals. Go ahead and book a consultation with them, call 063661 00800 or visit http://www.ayu.health.

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