California Community

New Medical Technology Could Bolster Chemotherapy

Aimee Sharp
Author | Shield HealthCare
02/12/15  10:08 PM PST
Cancer Treatments

By Eric Thomas for ABC 7 News

LIVERMORE, Calif. (KGO) — Chemotherapy helps save the lives of thousands of cancer patients each year. But now, researchers at the Lawrence Livermore Lab and UC Davis believe they’ve developed a technology that could make chemo treatments even more effective.

Theresa Madsen had just settled into retirement, when she received a frightening diagnosis.

“The CT scan showed I had a tumor on my left kidney,” Madsen recalled.

Madsen turned to Dr. Chong-Xian Pan and his team at UC Davis, who first removed her left kidney. Pan then recommended chemotherapy, even though he says the effectiveness can vary wildly from patient to patient.

“For example in lung cancer, chemotherapy only works in less than 30 percent of patients. In bladder cancer, maybe 50 percent respond to chemotherapy,” Pan said.

To help boost those odds, Pan is trying an experimental and potentially groundbreaking technique, giving patients a tiny micro-dose of the cancer drug before treatment to gauge its effectiveness.

Read the Full Article at ABC 7 News.