Cancer is like a Bangladeshi.
The only way to stop it is early detection.
Once it gets a grip, there is very little hope, there is only pain.
I know because both my grandmothers died from cancer. I have also lost a close friend to cancer.
And I know how painful that process is for everybody concerned.
So I always keep a lookout for any news about advancement in cancer treatment. After all I still have my mother, my aunts, my cousins, my dear dear friends and a plethora of nieces.
And there seems some astonishingly good news around.
A trial conducted by Cancer Research UK found out that using Herceptin in combination with another drug (lapatinib) before surgery shrinks and may even destroy tumours in women with an aggressive form of breast cancer in less than two weeks.
Herceptin is a monoclonal antibody. It works by targeting and blocking the HER2 protein.
Lapatinib is a type of biological therapy called a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI).
Prof Nigel Bundred, from the University of Manchester and the University Hospital of South Manchester NHS foundation trust, who presented the data, said: “This has groundbreaking potential because it allows us to identify a group of patients who, within 11 days, have had their tumours disappear with anti-HER2 therapy alone and who potentially may not require subsequent chemotherapy….. This offers the opportunity to tailor treatment for each individual woman.”
Samia al Qadhi, chief executive at Breast Cancer Care, said: “The astonishing findings in this study show that combining these two drugs has the potential to shrink HER2 positive breast cancer in just 11 days….For some HER2 positive breast cancer patients the effect of this drug combination will be amazing and mean they can avoid chemotherapy and its gruelling side effects completely. For others, their tumours may not shrink, but doctors will know either way very quickly, giving them the ability to rapidly decide on further treatment. …Although an early study, this has game changing potential. Yet before this can be made available we need to see more evidence. Particularly because, at present, trastuzumab’s (Herceptin) licensing means it is only available to be used alongside chemotherapy and not alone. All cancer patients deserve access to clinically effective treatments.”
So great news all around.
A new hope so to speak.
But that’s not all, there’s lots going on.
All these discoveries are too late for my grandmothers and my friend.
But its not too late for you.
I hope and pray that this dreadful disease never comes near you. But, even if it does, all hoe is not lost.
Things are better than never before. But detection is the key.
So my dear dear ladies, please please please check.
Checking for lumps is easy to do, you don’t need any special equipment and hardly takes any time.
The key to your survival is in your own hands – literally.
And while you are at it, please do get pap smears, at least once every year.