A dramatic breakthrough has been achieved by British researchers against a lethal form of prostate cancer that is responsible for the death of about 12,000 male patients out of 35,000 that are diagnosed with the disease every year. In upto 80 percent of the cases the trials of a new pill has shown that the tumor shrinks and helps avoid damaging procedures of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
The new advance has been hailed as potentially the biggest in the field of prostate cancer and claimed to be capable of saving thousands of lives. The technique could be effective for the treatment of other tumors as well, such as bresat and bowel cancers, it is believed by the scientists.
The new drug, abiraterone, was developed by researchers at the Royal Marsden Hospital in South-West London. The leader of the team, Dr. Johann de Bono, said,
it is possible to control the disease in patients with just four pills a day without any major side effects.
Prostate cancer, a common non-skin cancer, is the cause of significant health problems among the old. The rate of occurrence of the affliction in the US is almost 3 out of 100 in the age group between 40 and 59, and is still higher at 1 out of 15 among people between 60 and 69 years of age.
As Britain’s most common cancer among men and the second most deadly killer disease after lung cancer, prostate cancer has been a field of research in which scientists have spent considerable time, energy, and funds since years in pursuance of their quest for a better cure.
Though genetics might play a role in the occurrence of the disease, social and environmental factors, especially diet and lifestyle, are also likely to have an effect.
Research in the past few years has shown that diet modification might reduce the chances of developing prostate cancer or help slow down the progression of the disease.
The small gland about the size of a walnut and is located just under the urinary bladder gains importance due to the other tender and vital organs that surround it. The narrow tube that carries both urine and semen to the outlet at the tip of the penis runs through it. The lower end of the bowel, or the rectum, sits behind it.
The pair of seminal vescicles that secrete the fluids that make up 60 percent of semen is just above the prostate. The crucial nerves that control the erectile function of the penis run alongside and are attached to the sides of the prostate.
In spite of the best efforts of surgeons, traditional treatment strategies for prostate cancer used to cause disruption in normal urinary, bowel, and sexual functioning.
If during prostatectomy surgery that was standard during the mid 1980s, the erectile nerves were severed or otherwise damaged the penis would lose the ability to achieve erection, while sexual desire remained affected.
The new advance brought about by the British researchers is expected to be of great utility in treating several thousand prostate cancer patients worldwide every year.
Via: Daily Mail