The word cancer needs no introduction. One of the most dreaded words in the world has to be cancer. Millions of people battle cancer on a daily basis. For years, cancer has been one of the most researched topics, and the studies to find a cure for all cancers continues.
Where earlier it was believed that a person with cancer would eventually succumb to the disease, the advances in the field of medicine have turned the tables completely. One of the biggest boons for cancer warriors is the availability of anti-cancer medicines. The development of anti-cancer medicines, otherwise also known as antineoplastic medicine, has been a major breakthrough in the battle with cancer.
These anti-cancer medicines work through different mechanisms and help in the treatment of various cancers. They are various anti-cancer medicines available today that have helped various patients in improving their condition and the quality of their life.
Cancer Medicines and Treatment
Chemotherapy, targeted drug therapy, and immunotherapy are the different types of anti-cancer drug therapies that produce their cancer effect through different mechanisms with one common goal- fighting off cancer and improving the quality of the patient’s life. The type of Anti-cancer medicine prescribed usually depends on the type of cancer, the stage of cancer, and the overall health of the patient. It is usually given either alone or in combination with various other cancer treatments like surgery and radiation therapy.
Chemotherapy drugs make use of medicines that act on cancer by producing a cytotoxic action. Osimertinib, Alectinib, Abiraterone acetate are some chemotherapy drugs that are commonly prescribed to cancer patients.
Targeted drug therapy medicines act by identifying and attacking the cancer cells. Targeted drugs act by producing an inhibitory action on the proteins or genes responsible for cancer growth. Lapatinib, Crizotinib, Sorafenib and Bevacizumab are some commonly prescribed targeted therapy drugs.
Immunotherapy on the other hand, is a ground-breaking treatment that works by influencing the immune system. Immunotherapy medicines produce their action by helping the immune system detect, attack, and destroy the cancer cells. Immunotherapy has shown promising results in the treatment of around 20 cancers which include cancers of the breast, blood, bladder, cervical, colorectal, lung, liver, prostate, skin, esophageal, head, and neck. Pembrolizumab, Nivolumab, Ipilimumab are some examples of immunotherapy drugs.
Recent research done by oncologists in the UK shows that the combination of pembrolizumab, an immunotherapy drug, and guadecitabine, a next-generation DNA hypomethylating agent can reverse the resistance developed by the cancer cells to immunotherapy which offers a new hope to patients out of options.
According to the clinical trial results published in the Journal for Immunotherapy of Cancer, this treatment has halted the advance of cancer in more than a third of patients enrolled in the early phase 1 trial. The study lead, Dr. Anna Minchom, a clinical scientist at the Institute of Cancer Research and a consultant medical oncologist at the Royal Marsden, said: “Immunotherapy has shown amazing promise in cancer care over the last decade, but it doesn’t work well in all cancers and cancers can often become resistant. This combination might be a way to target their cancer even after it has stopped responding to immunotherapy.”
Where anti-cancer medicines have helped millions of cancer warriors and survivors, there are various side effects seen with their use. Side effects are a part of the treatment. All medicines have side effects. However, the side effects associated with cancer medicines may be acute or severe and may differ from one patient to another. Usually, supportive care or palliative care can help in easing the side effects and provide symptomatic relief. Although side effects are bound to occur during cancer treatment, the benefits from the medicine outweigh the risk of side effects, making anti-cancer medicines a great choice for cancer treatment.
Innovative approaches are being studied and researched every day to provide medicines for cancer treatment that are better than the existing ones. Research has been carried out for decades to provide cancer medicines that are better than the existing ones in terms of their effect on different types of cancers, have minimized side effects, provides a better and improved cancer prognosis to the patient, and even cure in certain cases. Where medical science has achieved this to a certain extent, the road to reach there is still long, and the journey is yet to end to reach the destination.
Everything Comes With a Price
While cancer medicines have proved their importance in a cancer patient’s life, there are several hard facts that cannot be ignored. One of them being the cost of the medicines. Prices of cancer medicines have an impact on patients all around the globe. And despite the existence of various cancer medicines that provide great results, cancer disease is not the only thing a patient battles with.
Along with cancer, the patient and the family are waging a constant battle with the increased prices. Where the cost of cancer medicines has been impacting people worldwide, it’s the people belonging to low- or middle-income countries that face the wrath of the prices the most. With the pricing of the medicines, the financial burden on the cancer families and the patients can be crushing.
Although there are various online pharmacies, MrMed offers best-selling cancer drugs like Opdyta 40mg Injection and most expensive cancer drugs like Tecentriq 1200mg Injection at affordable prices and with great deals. It is a reliable source catering to all anti-cancer medicine needs of the patient. There are various patient assistance programs (PAP) that are provided by various pharmaceutical companies and MrMed provides cancer care assistance on getting enrolled in them. Even though various attempts are being made to provide anti-cancer medicines at economical prices, there are a lot of gaps that are to be filled on a global level to ease the financial burden on the patients.