Newer drugs being used to treat aggressive breast cancers showing positive results

Buddy Check

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — There are two newer drugs being used to treat women suffering from aggressive and tough to treat cancers. The drugs offer a combination on immunotherapy and chemotherapy.

 “We’re seeing significant improvements that we haven’t seen in such a long time,” said Dr. Amy Hale, Optumcare.

She is the director of pharmacy for medical oncology at Optumcare Cancer Care and is optimistic about a pair of drugs. The first Enhertu which is for patients who have HER2 positive metastatic breast cancer. It offers a one, two punch of immunotherapy and a pytotoxic drug. It’s often prescribed after other drugs fail.

“As we get deeper into those lines of therapies we generally have to use more and more toxic therapies but this kind of gives us a chance to build on what’s already there and just use a different approach to treating the cancer versus a more dangerous approach,” Dr. Hale said.

The second IV drug, Trodelvy, is also an immune targeted therapy but this one is used to fight triple negative breast cancer. It’s considered the most difficult cancer to treat, affecting 10 to 15% of patients. Trodelvy is less toxic to healthy cells and more effective in treating cancer cells.

 “Both of them are used after we’ve tried two other lines of therapy. So, again in these metastatic breast cancer patients, a lot of times we’ve tried multiple lines of therapy,” Dr. Hale said.

A majority of metastatic cancers are incurable but these cancer cocktails are giving patients a little bit more hope and time. 

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Remember breast cancer is also one of the most treatable if it’s caught early enough. Buddy Check wants to remind people to do monthly breast self-exams.

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