Science

Lung Cancer: New Drugs Could Help Patients Live Longer

By Irene Guerrero , Feb 01, 2017 01:24 AM EST
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New immunotherapy drugs mean that lung cancer patients could have chances to live longer. The FDA approved eight new medications that could give promising results to lung cancer patients. This is a pleasant news to people living in New York, but on the contrary for people living in Sioux Falls, S.D. Because the new medications are not always available outside of the major cancer centers.

Lung cancer patients outside of the major cancer centers is not getting the latest genomic and proteomic tests. Matt Ellefson was living in Sioux Falls, S.D., when he was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2009. The oncologist at his local hospital told him that he had eight months to live. After depression and frustration while researching for a possible cure. Matt found a clinical trial at MD Anderson, where he could find treatment for his tumor. He volunteered for the trial and moved to Houston with his wife for five months.

The accessibility of possible cures for lung cancer is one of the issues US has to face. This case has inspired digital health company Antidote and leading patient organization Patient Power, to seek ways on how to make lung cancer treatments and medications be available across the US. The goal was to make lung cancer patients in the US have access to every tumor testing, targeted treatments and trials.

There are a lot more organizations that would like to join and support this campaign. These organizations include Precision Medicine For Me, H-Labs and the Patient Empowerment Foundation, the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, the Lung Cancer Foundation of America, Free to Breathe, the Lung Cancer Alliance and PatientsLikeMe. The collaboration was launched 11 ½ weeks. Hundreds of patients who have heard about it was using the site to be able to access free service that works with patients and doctors.

According to the Westchester, 75 percent of lung cancer diagnosis becomes a dreadful diagnosis because their lung cancer is already in the advanced stage. That means it is too late to conduct a curative surgery. Lung cancer remains to be the leading cause of cancer death in the US. Taking 158,000 patients lives each year.

Lung cancer patients who use the site will be informed about schedules of organized next-generation genomic and proteomic tests. Interpreting results and recommending treatments and trials are also free of charge. For the moment Precision Medicine for Me focuses on lung cancer. Additional therapeutic treatments will be addressed in the next coming months.

According to the Forbes, Matt began his Journey searching cure for his lung cancer. He was diagnosed to have eight months to live, but that was over seven years ago. Today, Matt is fighting two battles, his personal battle with lung cancer and the battle to help his fellow cancer patients to access modern medication they needed.

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