Latest Advancements in Breast Cancer Treatment Methods in Pakistan
According to the World Health Organization, to this day breast Cancer remains one of the two most common types of cancer in the world. Moreover, Pakistan has the highest incidence rate of breast cancer among Asian countries. 1 out of every 9 women is at risk of being affected with breast cancer. With such a high rate of breast cancer, it is crucial that we equip our hospitals with the most advanced treatments of breast cancer methods. Over the years Pakistan has adapted some of the advanced techniques and treatment methods to treat breast cancer effectively.
Here are some of the latest advancements in breast cancer treatment in Pakistan.
Targeted Radiation for Breast Cancer Treatment
Previously it was advised to use radiation therapy on a daily basis for 7 weeks for most cancer patients. Such extensive radiation therapy was necessary for achieving positive results. Contrary to that, with targeted radiation therapy treatments can be customized according to the patient and the tumor. Before starting the radiation therapy, a three-dimensional computer planner construct an image of the tumor. This mage is then used to study the tumor and to devise a precise treatment plan for the treatment of the tumor. This method minimizes the effect of radiation on the surrounding internal organs and muscles. As a result, the days required for the treatment are reduced. Similarly, the latest techniques such as the deep inspiration breath hold technique can protect the heart during the treatment.
Treating cancer can be much easier if you identify it before time. Testing a person’s genetics for hereditary cancer can be extremely helpful in identifying the risk factor for future cancer even before it occurs. An oncologist can also use genetic testing after completing a breast cancer treatment. This will help the oncologist to guide future treatment decisions. Genetic testing can help to determine the risk of breast cancer recurring and how effective was chemotherapy on cancer.
Lymph Node Surgery
A recurring concern with cancer is its spread to other parts of the body. To determine if cancer has spread or not, a process called sentinel lymph node surgery is carried out. The sentinel lymph nodes are the lymph nodes that are affected first if cancer spread out. They are part of the axillary lymph nodes. They are identified by using a combination of radioisotope and blue dye processes. The lymph nodes are examined to find cancer cells. If cancer cells are found, you can proceed to treatment before they spread further.
Pembrolizumab for Breast Cancer Treatment
Pembrolizumab is a Food and Drug Association (FDA) approved medication for treating cancer with a large amount of gene mutation in its cells. pembrolizumab (Keytruda) is recommended for the treatment of metastatic triple-negative breast cancer.
In July 2021, FDA approved pembrolizumab (Keytruda) to treat early-stage triple-negative breast cancer. Keytruda is also recommended to be used in combination with chemotherapy for first-line treatment in patients who have the protein PD-L1 present. Pembrolizumab works by helping your immune system attack cancer cells.
Every year, new treatments for breast cancer have been discovered that assist to increase survival rates. These ground-breaking procedures are far safer and more successful than previous treatments. They might be able to take the place of more aggressive treatments like chemotherapy. This suggests that a person’s quality of life will increase while undergoing breast cancer treatment. New targeted agents also open up new avenues for combining therapies. For most people diagnosed with breast cancer, combination therapy continue to increase survival. With ongoing research and advancements, it is safe to say that we are moving towards a future with many effective and efficient treatments for breast cancer.