The first case of cancer cured without using chemotherapy

A diagnosis of Cancer It can have a huge impact on most patients and their families. Feelings of depression, anxiety and fear are very common, and are normal responses to this life-changing experience.

Each person has a way of being, a way of dealing with problems, a set of beliefs and values ​​and a certain way of seeing the world, and therefore, the way in which each will face the disease will be unique.

In case of Judy Perkins, 49, has already become a story that is synonymous with hope for hundreds of thousands of women in the world who fight against this disease.

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She is the first woman managed to overcome cancer in its last stage of development. He did it after undergoing immunotherapy, a method by which the sick they use their own immune cells to find and destroy cancer cells.

Judy Perkins had a breast cancer that had spread to several areas of the body. Normally, tumors of this type have a very poor prognosis, and in their case he had been given three years of life as much.

The woman, an engineer based in Florida, had attended all the chemotherapy sessions assigned to her. He had not missed any. However, the cancer progressed since he was detected that tumor in his right breast. He did it in such a way that the metastasis spread throughout his body, taking his liver and other organs.

"My condition deteriorated so much towards the end that I even had a tumor pressing on a nerve, which meant that I spent my time trying not to move anything to keep the pain from going down my arm, I almost gave up fighting", Judy counted.

But she never under arms, and decided to submit to experimental treatment based on immunotherapy.

The treatment to which Judy was exposed was made in the National Cancer Institute of the United States in Maryland. For specialists it is not a miracle, but something unprecedented in a cancer so developed.

"We are on the cusp of a great revolution to finally realize the elusive goal of being able to attack the plethora of mutations in cancer through immunotherapy"explained the doctor Laszlo Radvanyi, director of the Cancer Research Institute of Ontario, upon hearing the Perkins case.

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Battle won at metastasis

The treatment is not so easy to apply to any patient, and it takes time. To develop the one that specifically saved Judy, the doctors had to analyze particles of the woman's tumors, study the DNA and its mutations.

Then, the researchers extracted cells known as tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs), which are cells of the immune system that tried to leak into tumors to kill them, but failed to be very weak or too few to comply with. Your mission

Once they were identified and isolated, scientists had to create billions of them in the laboratory. They extracted the most effective ones, which could be those that kill the tumors, and applied them again. In Judy's case, they were 80 billion autoimmune cells.

"About a week later (after the therapy started), I began to feel something, that the tumor in my chest was shrinking", Judy counted. "It took another week or two for it to disappear completely", he added.

Paradigm shift

Although for the moment the experimental treatment has only been tested in this case, the international scientific community plans to start using it more often until it is verified if its effectiveness is replicable.

Judy Perkins explained that the treatment was not very pleasant: she suffered from fatigue, and she had to take medication to control the pain. But as he progressed, the pain diminished until he no longer needed medication to endure it.

Undoubtedly, modern medicine is one of the great wonders of our time. Only 50 years ago, a patient like Perkins could not have survived his illness. Today, however, this American woman is in perfect health and enjoying her life, hiking and kayaking.

This treatment is just another of the new alternatives to chemotherapy that are being developed in recent times.

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