Tag Archives: Mastectomy

Actress Uses Cancer Diagnosis to Change Her Life

Targeted Cancer Therapy Can Bring Patients New Hope!
Hope with Diagnosis

Actress Shannen Doherty is best known as one-half of the Walsh twins on the hit TV show “Beverly Hills 90210,” but lately acting has taken a back seat to a more serious challenge. For the past eighteen months Doherty has used social media to share her brave and inspiring battle against breast cancer.

Her Courageous Journey toward Restored Health

In March 2015, then 43-year-old Doherty was diagnosed with breast cancer, which she made public the following August. She filed a lawsuit against her former business managers alleging that the diagnosis was delayed because they left her without medical insurance. The suit was settled this past August.

Early in 2016, doctors discovered that the cancer had spread to Doherty’s lymph nodes, causing her to undergo a single mastectomy in May. When Doherty was presented with the American Cancer Society’s Courage Award at a gala in November, she revealed that she had completed chemotherapy and was beginning a course of radiotherapy.

How Cancer Changed Her Lifemastectomymastectomy

Over the last year-and-a-half, Doherty has documented her treatment online in words and pictures. She credits cancer with making her a “better human being” and demonstrating which people in her life could be truly counted on, a group that includes her mother, husband and friends such as fellow actress Sarah Michelle Gellar.

Immunotherapy for Cancer: A Personalized Path of Treatment

At Issels®, our integrative immunotherapy for cancer programs are designed to address you particular needs. Our protocols attack and kill cancer cells while boosting your body’s own natural defenses. Contact us today for more information.

Cancer Drugs in the News

New Cancer Drugs
New Cancer Drugs

There’s so much negative news bombarding TV, newspaper, Internet, and radio, every day, that sometimes it can become overwhelming. On the plus side, when positive cancer news is forthcoming, we don’t want to miss it.

A recent conference in Madrid covering new cancer drug information brought exciting news and results to the forefront regarding immunotherapies and the effects on the immune system of cancer patients when combined with approved drugs.

Merck & Co., Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Roche Holding Ltd. and AstraZeneca each offered data compiled from initial testing. While results were positive from each company, there still exists a concern due to toxicity leading to negative side effects when immunotherapies are combined.

Immunotherapy drugs act on a specific protein known as Programmed Death Receptor 1 or PD-1 or PD-L1. Two of these drugs have received the stamp of approval. One drug, Keytruda from Merck, was approved in the U.S. The other, Opdivo from Bristol-Myers, was approved in Japan but not yet in the U.S.

Clinical date from AstraZeneca’s PD-L1 shows promise against lung cancer. Roche shared its results using its immunotherapy drug combined with an additional drug, Avastin, a non-immunotherapy drug used against breast cancer.

While the news is good and results have been positive showing increases in patient responding to treatment ranging from 22 percent to 40 percent, there can be side effects. The lowest result was at 8 percent for colorectal cancer patients.

Safety remains a priority with immunotherapy combinations but each company plans to continue its clinical trials with patients across the board dealing with pancreatic, neck, head, gastric, and ovarian cancer and melanoma.

At the end of the day, it’s good news.

Cancer Drug Research Will Change Lives in the Future

Cancer Drug Research
Cancer Drug Research

Cancer drug research is moving medicine toward a new frontier of personalized cancer treatment that is expected to change our lives for the better in the not too distant future. Tremendous strides in genetic and cellular research have vastly extended our knowledge about how cancer attacks and spreads on the cellular level, opening new avenues for cancer research and potential treatments.

Targeting Cancer Triggers

Focusing cancer research on genetic and cellular behavior has revealed the existence of specific genes and proteins that affect cell growth and development. When these genetic switches malfunction, uncontrolled cell growth can occur which can lead to the development of cancer tumors can occur. Recent cancer news indicates that drug manufacturers are racing to develop new cancer drugs designed to target these cancer triggers and turn them off. The first of this new wave of cancer drugs is beginning to reach the marketplace and early cancer news reports are promising.

Personalized Cancer Treatment

As cancer drugs become more effective in isolating and neutralizing genetic and cellular cancer triggers, personalized cancer treatments are expected to become the norm. If, as many believe, personal genome mapping becomes commonplace in the future; cancer specialists will be able to order personalized cancer treatments based on your own genetic code.

At the Issels Centers in Tijuana, Mexico and Santa Barbara, California, we recognize that every patient is unique and that each individual’s response to cancer is equally unique. Cancer demands an individualized response. Our highly personalized cancer treatment protocols have produced an admirable record of complete long-term remissions of advanced and standard therapy-resistant cancers. Visit our website to hear what our patients have to say.

Angelina Jolie Reveals Decision to Undergo Preventive Double Mastectomy

Breast Cancer Awareness
Breast Cancer Awareness

In a New York Times op-ed column, actress Angelina Jolie shocked many people by revealing that she had undergone preventive double mastectomy after learning she carries the BRCA1 gene which is known to significantly increase the risk of breast cancer and uterine cancer. Supported by husband Brad Pitt, Ms. Jolie’s decision to “be proactive and to minimize the risk as much as I could” was driven in large part by her mother’s long-term cancer battle and early death at the age of 56. In sharing her decision, Ms. Jolie lamented the fact that only one of her six children had the opportunity to know their grandmother before her death.

“My chances of developing breast cancer have dropped from 87% to under 5%,” Ms. Jolie said. “I can tell my children that they don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer.”

Ms. Jolie is not the first high-profile celebrity to choose preventive double mastectomy. In 2008, actress Christina Applegate had both breasts removed after surviving breast cancer to prevent its return. However, Ms. Jolie represents a growing new movement among high-risk cancer patients to act before cancer strikes.

The desire to take aggressive preventive action before receiving a cancer diagnosis has been fueled by the discovery of genetic defects — BRCA1 and BRCA2 –directly linked to a high risk of breast cancer. Coupled with the high incidence of breast cancer among women, discovery that they carry a genetic marker for breast cancer seems to stoke the natural fear cancer provokes.

Preventive surgery is one way to deal with cancer fear, but it is not the only choice.

To be continued