Medindia

X

New, Non-surgical Skin Cancer Treatment

by Sheela Philomena on  January 7, 2012 at 10:29 AM Cancer News   - G J E 4
Radioactive paint could help clear skin cancer without surgery, say scientists.

In just two hours, the new technique can obliterate tumours caused by the most common skin cancers without surgery or conventional radiotherapy.
 New, Non-surgical Skin Cancer Treatment
New, Non-surgical Skin Cancer Treatment
Advertisement

According to scientists, there are minimal side effects and the treatment does not even leave a scar.

Advertisement
The breakthrough therapy, which has been used on 700 patients in Italy with a success rate of up to 95 percent, could be available in the UK within two years to treat basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.

The treatment is not suitable for malignant melanoma, which is the deadliest form of skin cancer.

The vast majority of those who suffer from less dangerous forms of cancer have surgery to remove the affected tissue.

Other treatments include radiotherapy and "freezing" of the tumours if they are small and superficial.

However, an estimated 3 percent of patients have deep tumours that are difficult to remove surgically because they are on sensitive areas such as the eyes, nose or ears. Others cannot have surgery due to age or medical conditions.

These patients are given radiotherapy, which involves at least ten sessions at a hospital and often results in serious side-effects.

For the new technique, Italian researchers harnessed rhenium-188, a radioactive isotope which was previously rare and expensive but is now being supplied in quantities large enough to treat thousands of patients a week by nuclear physicists at the British-funded Institut Laue-Langevin in France.

The radioactive paste is applied to the tumour area via a piece of surgical foil on the skin

The treatment, which is said to be painless, involves putting a piece of surgical foil on the tumour area, painting on the radioactive paste and removing it one or two hours later.

Researchers believe that the radiation causes healthy skin to re-grow, so that there is no scarring.

In the Italian trial, 85 percent of patients were cured after one treatment and up to 95 per cent after three treatments.

"This means that patients with large and difficult-to-treat tumours not only have hope but keep their quality of life under what would otherwise be dire conditions," the Daily Mail quoted Oliver Buck, chief executive of the German technology firm ITM which developed the therapy as saying.

"These people sometimes have to go through horrible surgery which removes part of their face. By contrast this treatment is generally done in a single non-invasive session," he said.

Trials are now being held in Germany and Australia, and Buck believes that the treatment could be licensed in the UK within two years, which will "certainly" be cheaper than current therapies.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions

You May Also Like

Advertisement
View All