Cancer Treatment : Combination Threapy
The Therapy that uses more than one cancer treatments to treat cancer is Known as The Combination Therapy. The cancer can be treated better by any combination of:
An experimental breakthrough have been achieved by the Scientists doing research that the simultaneous use of two or more agents for treating cancer is much more effective, known as combination therapy.
It is proved to be safe and effective in human. A new study and discovery outlines this therapy and promising general strategy for treating many cancers that can not be treated by current therapies.
According to the two-drug combination therapy, published in the journal Nature, stated the complete cure of a mouse model of B-cell lymphoma in all of the treated animals. While in contrast, animals those treated with either one of the drugs alone (rapamycin or doxorubicin) rarely experienced a complete cure.
A new paradigm has been established by the study, led by Dr. Scott Lowe of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, that will help in overcoming resistance of chemotherapy in many forms of cancer.
A programme called cell death which is normally active in most types of cells where the pre-cancerous cells can be eliminated from the body by a natural self-destruct mechanism. But, in most of the cancers cell there is a defect in programmed cell death that makes possible for the pre-cancerous cells to survive, grow out of control, and form a tumor. Traditionally chemotherapy agents act by effecting programmed cell death and so such agents are mostly ineffective against tumors that lack this functional programmed cell death mechanism. Such tumors are referred as chemotherapy-resistant tumor. Thus a major impediment to successful therapeutic outcomes for human cancer has been the chemotherapy-resistant tumors.
Lowe and his colleagues stated that like a one-two knockout punch in boxing--using one drug to restore the programmed cell death mechanism and a second drug to trigger the process might reduce or eliminate chemotherapy-resistance and be an effective strategy for treating cancer.
Based on their statement on the programmed cell death mechanism, and on their knowledge given, the researchers were able to make use of two existing drugs 'off-the-shelf' in a rational way and found that they worked extraordinarily well, when used in combination, for treating 'Akt-positive' lymphomas (Lymphomas where the hyperactivity of a protein called Akt, inactivates the programmed cell death mechanism).
Boston , MA "Research suggests that adding hormonal therapy to standard treatments for prostate cancer can offer real advantages to men with advanced or high-grade disease that has not spread from the gland, according to the January issue of Harvard Men's Health Watch ."
Researchers have made great achievement in understanding prostate cancer. They are successful in identifying the genes that make some men more prone to this disease and are started to point-out the lifestyle factors associated to risk. Even there is a great improvement in the standard treatments. The removal of the glands through surgery has become much more safe and new techniques may help preserve potency. New innovation in radiation therapy enables oncologists to deliver more powerful and effective treatment with very less or no side effects. The innovative forms of hormonal drug therapy can lower levels of testosterone dramatically, which led to the growth of prostate cells.
Previous studies revealed that the combination of hormonal therapy and external beam radiation could reduce the spread of locally advanced cancer more effectively than radiation therapy alone. Even though, men surgically treated, did not seem to benefit at all from adding hormonal treatment. Another three more studies, described in Harvard Men's Health Watch , increased the reach of combination therapy. Two of them found that by adding hormonal therapy can improve survival in the man receiving radiation. The third stated that hormonal treatment can decrease the progression of disease in men those treated with radiation, surgery, or watchful waiting.
How does Combination Therapy work?
In order to understand combination therapy we first need to collect information of how different kind of cancer treatment works:
Radiation therapy and OncoSurgery are used to treat when any one part of the body (such as the breast) is affected by cancers
Chemotherapy is used to treat cancer cells that have spread all over the body (like leukemia) or cancer cells that have moved from one place like from the prostate gland to another place like bones.
Sometimes, doctor may suggest to undergo radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy to reduce the cancer or shrink a tumor before any surgery, hence improving the opportunity for complete surgical removal. While in some other cases, doctors can recommend to have chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy after surgery to kill or destroy any remaining cancer cells that might have been left behind.
Combination therapy is capable to:
- Cure cancer.
- Control the cancer for sometime.
- The risk of cancer coming back again is reduced.
- Help to get rid of or adjust with cancer symptoms, such as pain.
For certain type of cancers, this therapy is the best treatment. Your doctor will explain what kind of combination therapy is best for you and why.
Combination chemotherapy is chemotherapy drugs given in combination and chemotherapy is most effective when given in combination. Combination chemotherapy rationale is to use the drugs that works by different mechanisms of action, so decreasing the possibility that resistant cancer cells will develop. By combining drugs with different effects, each drug can be used at its optimal dose,without having any side effects.
The best approach for certain cancer case is a combination of surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. We know Locally confined cancer can be treated through surgery or radiation therapy while chemotherapy can kill cancer that have spreaded to distant sites. Whether single therapy or a combination is needed depends on the stage of the cancer. Like for example breast cancer in early stage can be alone treated with surgery or surgery combined with chemotherapy, radiation therapy or sometimes with all the three treatments which mainly depends on the size of the tumor and the risk of recurrence. Like for example, people with unresectable non-small cell lung cancer, esophageal cancer, or bladder cancer combination chemotherapy is a real help for them.
Side Effects of Combination Therapy.
Cancer treatments causes side effects. From this therapy some people do not have any side effect, while other people may have some or even many side-effects. No one can tell exactly which side effect one can experience until the treatment begins. Your doctor or the health care team must give you a brief about the side effects that you might experience during the treatment and how to cope with them. It should be kept in mind that the side effects are not at all a sign of how well the therapy is working against your cancer.
Hence, the combination therapy is now referred as the new innovation is a very promising general strategy for curing many cancers that are refractory to current therapies.
Some alternative to Combination Threapy in respect to cancer treatment are
Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy, Immunotherapy, Surgical Oncology, and Hormone Therapy.
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