PRRT and the promise it holds for cancer treatment

As we continue our conversation on Precision Medicine for cancer, a popular therapy used to treat NET tumours or Neuro Endocrine Tumours is PRRT or Peptide Receptor Radionuclide therapy.
Neuroendocrine tumours are a rare form of cancer and originate from Neuro endocrine cells in the body and hence the name.They are different from adenocarcinoma’s and often do not do not respond well to chemotherapy, the 1st line of treatment for most cancers.

By administering radioactive protein lutetium octreotate, it is possible to treat NET tumours or neuro endocrine carcinoma with precision and offset progression of disease.

PRRT for neuroendocrine tumour
PRRT treatment for metastatic cancer cells spreading and growing. Tailor-made precision medicine based on genetic profile and molecular structure of the tumour.

In PRRT a peptide or a cell targeting protein is combined with a small amount of radio active nuclide creating what is called as a radio peptide. The radio peptide when injected into the patients blood stream travels and binds to a neuro endocrine tumour, delivering a high dose of radiation to the tumours. This also limits damage to the nearby healthy tissue and hence lesser and milder side effects than chemotherapy.

What kind of cancers can be treated by PRRT?

Along with Neuroendocrine tumours, carcinoids, islet cell carcinoma of the pancreas, small cell carcinoma of the lung a form of lung cancer, pheochromocytoma (a rare tumor that forms in the adrenal glands), gastro-enteropancreatic (stomach cancer , intestine cancer and pancreas) neuroendocrine tumors, and rare thyroid cancers that are unresponsive to treatment with radio iodine are often treated with PRRT.

Role of PRRT is also being explored for treatment of prostate cancer.

When is a patient a candidate for PRRT ?

Patients with following conditions are often proposed for PRRT

  • When neuro endocrine tumours are not responsive to other lines of cancer treatment
  • When surgical removal of tumours is not possible at current stage, PRRT may be used to reduce size of the tumours.
  • PRRT is also a treatment option for last stage inoperable cancers when metastasis has set in.
    The main aim of PRRT is then to slow down progression of disease, offer relief and prolong life.

However, not all neuroendocrine tumours respond to PRRT. First an OctreoScan is done. If the patient is found to have a positive OctreoScan and meets other requirements, PRRT is proposed.

What happens during PRRT ?

For patients having a positive octreoscan, to start with an amino acid solution is delivered to protect the kidneys.

As most net tumours have a lot of a specific type of surface receptor, a protein called somatostatin. Octreotide, is a lab version of somastostatin. During PRRT, a dose of radio nuclides such as Lutetium, Yttrium are often combined with octreotide and injected into the blood stream.

Molecular imaging and scans follow to see whether the radio peptide has latched on of the tumour sites correctly.

The entire session usually lasts for about 4 hrs and is often done as an out patient procedure.

The main goals of PRRT hence are to provide symptom relief, to stop or slow tumor progression and to improve overall survival.

Advantages of PRRT ?

PRRT along with other molecular therapies or targeted therapies offer excellent results as they are tailor made keeping in mind molecular properties of the tumour and also biologic characteristics of the patient.

PRRT is offered in Germany , USA, UK and other developed countries at a significant cost, In India, a single session of PRRT costs approx USD 6300.

Get in touch with us for a second opinion on cancer treatment, write to us on info@ihealthkonnect.com or send us a query

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Decoding CyberKnife, for cancer treatment and benign tumours

We often get queries on CyberKnife and what is CyberKnife used for ?

CyberKnife is an excellent treatment option for treating cancer’s such as prostate cancer, gliomas ,brain cancer, kidney cancer, lung cancer, spine cancer, cancer of the pancreas, head and neck cancer, liver cancer, early stage -localised breast cancer and several types of malignant tumours, benign tumours and several other medical conditions.
CyberKnife delivers stereostatic radiation( SBRT) with extreme precision and a tissue margin of 1-5mm

Non invasive, CybeKnife vaporises a brain tumour

Cyber knife is totally non invasive and offers hope for inoperable localised cancers such as small cell lung cancer,for inoperable lesions where there is no other alternative for the patient to be treated.
CyberKnife can spot the exact size, shape and location of the tumor and delivers highly concentrated beams of radiation with precision ranging from 1 to 5 mm and this leads to minimal damage and bleeding.

Since CyberKnife treatment is totally non invasive, it is used for treatment of inoperable cancers as an alternate to surgery or as an alternative to surgery to minimise trauma, avoid complications and reduce risk.

Most patients can be treated several times with the CyberKnife and even treated again or retreated with minimal side effects leading to a better quality of life.For example for prostate cancer, even for a repeat surgery, CyberKnife can be used very successfully.

CyberKnife treatment is FDA approved and can spot patient movement even while breathing. The radiation beams can be aimed from several directions, thereby never losing the precision which is hall mark of a CyberKnife treatment.

CyberKnife treatment usually gets completed in 3 to 5 sessions spread over a week. Most patients can lead normal lives post CyberKnife treatment Most CyberKnife treatments are covered by insurance providers all over the world.

To know more on CyberKnife and how it works, click here.

Since the treatment involves a high degree of expertise, CyberKnife treatment is not offered by most hospitals.

The stage, location and size of the tumour or the cancer plays an important role, hence multiple teams of doctors and oncologists need to be involved before a decision on  use of CyberKnife as treatment option can be arrived.
To connect to the best hospitals in India, offering CyberKnife, and to know if CyberKnife is a treatment option for your medical condition, send us an email on info@ihealthkonnect.com or Consult Now.

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Did you know 6 out of 10 men are diagnosed with Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer treatment cost, symptoms of prostate cancerStatistics show 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer within their lifetime. This number increases to about 6 in 10 that is 60% of men are diagnosed with prostate cancer after reaching the age of sixty-five.

Though the statistics may seem disheartening, only one in thirty-nine people die as a result of prostate cancer. That means that the average percentage of people who have died from prostate cancer is about 0.027%, probably the least possible for any form of cancer.

What this indicates is that the survival rate for prostate cancer is rather high, in fact after being diagnosed is almost

one-hundred percent. At ten years, survival rate is 98% and survival rate at 15 years is 95%.

There are many treatments for prostate cancer. The hardest part is simply informing yourself and your family on various

treatment options available , their estimated costs and the ability to choose the best treatment option available based on your specific medical condition.

Prostate Cancer Treatment Options:

The treatment options for prostate cancer include surgery and radiotherapy both.

The surgical options for prostate cancer treatment are Simple Prostatectomy, Radical Prostatectomy and TURP

Simple Prostatectomy: In simple prostatectomy or a subtotal prostatectomy, only part of the prostate is removed.

Radical Prostatectomy: In radical prostatectomy, the entire prostate gland is removed along with seminal vesicles and vas deferens. This can be done laparoscopically or even by using Robotic techniques in what is known as Robotic Prostatectomy.

Robotic Prostectomy: Robotic Prostectomy is essentially the same procedure, except it is done using a robotic console capable of making larger more precise incisions, while having a larger field of vision.

This reduces recovery time, the risk of complications, it minimalizes scarring, and it reduces the risk of leaving cancerous tissue.

Robotic Prostatectomy is more expensive and price ranges from US$ 7000 to US$8600 in best hospitals in India.

TURP: Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP) is a procedure in which the prostate gland is reduced in size by removing prostate tissue.

This procedure helps in relieving prostate cancer symptoms and helps with passage of the urine through the urinary tract if the prostate gland restricts urine flow. This procedure does not involve any incisions in the skin, it is all done by resectoscope through the urethra. Afterwards, in order to drain urine a catheter is inserted. The procedure requires hospital admission for a day to two. TURP usually costs between US$ 3000-US$ 3900.

Radiotherapy: Radiotherapy is the use of high-energy rays that in order to terminate cancerous cells. There are several side effects that you may experience after the procedure. These include but are not limited to, fatigue, nausea, and problems eating or drinking. Radiotherapy typically cost $3500 – $4500 in India. Besides radiotherapy, hormone injections are also used for treatment.

These are just a few of the effective of treatments available to those who are affected by prostate cancer. Knowing the benefits and risks of each procedure is a large part of the battle.

To assist patients and their families looking for best doctors, hospitals and treatment options, ihealthkonnect has listed estimated cost for major procedures online. Users can search, connect with best hospitals, doctors, compare cost of treatment and also get a free second medical opinion online.

To get a free 2nd opinion based on your medical conditions,

Consult Now

To compare prices for prostate cancer treatment,

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