It’s National Cancer Survivors Day on Sunday (June 7), and with a dramatic breakthrough in cancer treatment announced this week, there could soon be many more survivors around to celebrate.
Immunotherapy, the new weapon in the fight against cancer, is being hailed as the ‘biggest breakthrough since chemotherapy’.
It is already proving effective against some of the most deadly cancers, and researchers say it will replace chemotherapy within five years.
The treatment, which trains the immune system to attack and destroy cancerous cells, could save thousands of lives.
Trials are proving hugely successful, with patients given only months to live recovering. Among cancers eradicated by immunotherapy in the trials are lung, skin, kidney, bladder, head and neck cancers.
Professor Roy Herbst, chief of medical oncology at Yale Cancer Centre in the US, believes immunotherapy could become the “standard treatment” for cancer within five years.
“You can see a response as quickly as a couple of weeks. Some patients have amazing survival,” he said.
Dr Hussain at Medcare, welcomed the news, but stressed that the most important thing we can do as individuals to protect ourselves from early deaths from cancer is to undergo regular screening.
“Early diagnosis is vital and will give people a greater chance of survival,” she says.
Contact us to find out more about cancer screening at Medcare.