Surgery to remove cancer and even vital organs like kidneys has been a mainstay of cancer treatment, but today researchers are striving to find other options for patients. For example, non-surgical treatments for patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma include the use of immunotherapy (which uses the immune system to attack cancer cells) and tyrosine kinase inhibitors (which block enzymes that help cancer grow).
Fifteen years ago, there weren’t many first-line treatment options for patients with this type of cancer, but now we have several — allowing patients and their oncologists to choose which treatment works best for them.
In this special issue of CURE®, we spoke with a patient with metastatic renal cell carcinoma who received a second opinion after experiencing tumor growth while on a combination of two immunotherapy drugs. His new doctors suggested that he enroll in a clinical trial testing an immunotherapy drug with a tyrosine kinase inhibitor. He enrolled and competed, which resulted in the cancer shrinking. “Every scan I had showed a reduction and the overall reduction in my cancer was 54%,” he told CURE®. Two other patients interviewed for the story had similar experiences with the combination treatment, highlighting its effectiveness in treating this disease even in earlier stages.
In this issue, we also focus on preserving fertility in men diagnosed with testicular cancer. We spoke to a man who chose to conserve sperm after receiving his diagnosis in 2013 because he and his wife were actively trying to have children. After undergoing treatment – and experiencing problems with his specimens – he and his wife eventually had two beautiful daughters. Another man wasn’t worried about having children when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in his mid-20s, but ended up adopting five children later in life. Despite this diagnosis, men have options when it comes to starting or expanding their families.
Plus, you’ll meet an Army veteran with bladder cancer that may have been caused by Agent Orange exposure during his overseas service in Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos. Veterans Affairs recently expanded the list of suspected diseases for Agent Orange to include bladder cancer, a much-anticipated decision by the veteran community. “This is way overdue, but so appreciated,” said the military veteran.
This issue also features articles on the potential benefit of active surveillance in patients with low-risk prostate cancer, the impact of the recent Food and Drug Administration approval of Trodelvy (sacituzumab govitecan-hziy) for the treatment of metastatic urothelial cancer, and much more. more.
As always, thanks for reading.
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