Isolde had 6 tumors and was given 3 months of life, immunotherapy saved her
The cancer can be defeated with immunotherapy, as shown in the case of Isolde. It was not one, nor were there two, more than 6 tumors invaded Isolde’s body. This was revealed by a medical study. The smallest tumor measured 3 centimeters, the largest 15. The skin cancer called melanoma was already terminal. They gave him 3 months to live.
The tomography showed a lesion in the upper part of the thorax, in the left mammary gland, in the armpit and the abdominal wall.
The tumors that I had were not operable. Neither chemotherapy nor radiation could be an option, because they are palliative, because melanoma is very aggressive and does not react. There was practically nothing left to do, “says Isolde.
Miguel Ángel Álvarez Avitia, medical oncologist at the National Cancer Institute(INCAN), explains:
Many of these neoplasms grow in places where few symptoms occur. A 4-millimeter tumor has the ability to spread to wherever it wants, as aggressive is melanoma. “
The last hope for Isolde was in a treatment called immunotherapy. It was created by researchers James P. Allison and Japanese Tasuku Honjo, who in 2018 were recognized with the Nobel Prize in Medicine for demonstrating their efficiency against some types of cancer.
Immunotherapy specifically is a treatment that is not directed at the tumor. What we do is awaken the immune system to recognize a tumor that developed hiding from the immune system. Then we wake up and the immune system goes, attacks and destroys the tumor, “says Carlos Barrios, clinical oncologist at the Latinamerican Cooperative Oncology Group.
Unlike chemotherapy , immunotherapy does not attack good and bad cells. Here is the patient’s own immune system that fights cancer , which generates multiple benefits.
Less than 1% of patients with this type of therapy have a serious toxicity. Then you realize that it is even better tolerated than with chemotherapy, that we had 50 years working, “says Miguel Ángel Álvarez Avitia, medical oncologist at INCAN.
Two years ago, Isolde received 35 sessions of intravenous immunotherapy. His greatest wish was to see his son graduate.
At 6 months I no longer had any tumor. They were dissolving, disappearing. “
Isolde thought that if she got to her son’s graduation, maybe she would get very deteriorated.
I will arrive without hair, I will arrive very thin and see if I arrive. And the truth for me that day was very important, because I realized that not only had I reached my son’s graduation, but I’m going to be at my children’s wedding, I’m going to meet my grandchildren and I have a life for in front of. It’s practically a miracle and I believe that this is the paradigm of cancer treatment in the future. “
The high cost of immunotherapy is one of the main obstacles to accessing treatment, since it can reach 180 thousand pesos per month. However, in Mexico there are alternatives.
It is very important that we access centers where they have active research because a patient does not pay for treatment, “says Miguel Ángel Álvarez Avitia, medical oncologist at INCAN.
Carlos Barrios, clinical oncologist in Brazil, points out that it is necessary to make available clinical research alternatives for cancer patients in Latin America.
It’s one of the ways we have to improve treatment, “he says.
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