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High-tech scans could spare cancer patients from intensive chemotherapy

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Researchers have found that high-tech scanners can save the patients suffering from cancer of the lymphatic system of the serious side effects of chemotherapy and predict treatment outcome.

in the study, the use of positron emission tomography (PET) – a type of imaging test that uses a small amount of radioactive glucose to detect a disease in the body – doctors scanned over 1,200 patients with advanced Hodgkin lymphoma after they had received two cycles of standard chemotherapy.

Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a cancer that starts in white blood cells called lymphocytes.

“Customizing treatment depending on how well it works is an important development for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma and sets a new standard of treatment,” said Peter Johnson, a professor at the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom

patients were divided into two groups -. the first group following chemotherapy with bleomycin – an important drug used to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma – and the second group had chemotherapy without the drug

bleomycin comes with potential risks to severely affect the lungs and cause serious respiratory problems

.. the results showed that patients who stopped bleomycin have had the same survival rates than those who followed it. But above all, get rid of the side effects

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“The good news is that most people diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma can be cured. – In this test more than 95 percent of patients are alive after three years, “he added Johnson.

Three-year progression-free survival was observed in patients who underwent chemotherapy without bleomycin was 84.4 percent.

In addition, 85.7 per cent patients who underwent chemotherapy with bleomycin had a three-year progression-free survival

For patients with bleomycin good perspective stop has no effect negative.

however, patients who had a more resistant form of the disease were given more intensive chemotherapy treatment, according to the study.

“Getting to know patients who have a more difficult form of the disease means that we can select those who need stronger chemotherapy without affecting other serious side effects such as infertility,” Johnson said in the study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

“This approach, combined with a reduction in the need for radiotherapy, should substantially reduce damage to healthy tissue and the risk of second cancers caused by treatments,” he concluded.

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