New cream can cure cases of skin cancer without surgery
Scientists have developed a new cream which can cure cases of skin cancer and remove the need for patients to undergo radioactive therapy or surgery.
The treatment, which is being described as a radioactive paste or paint, has already been tested on 700 patients and has had a success rate of 95 percent.
It is effective when used against tumours resulting from the most common strains of skin cancer and works in just two hours.
There are now hopes the cream will be used to cure 3,000 patients of skin cancer every year.
To read the latest edition of Healthcare Global, click here
- UK to open ‘obese morgue’ with slabs that can hold 50st
- Babies born from frozen embryos are healthier
- Driving with a cold is ‘as dangerous as drink driving’
According to the scientists who developed the cream, it is a painless treatment and comes with minimal side effects.
Additionally, the radioactive elements in it promote new skin growth and therefore do not leave patients with unsightly scars.
However, the team has said it is only suitable for use on patients with non-melanoma skin cancer and cannot be used on those suffering from malignant melanomas, the most fatal form of the cancer.
The cream contains a radioactive isotape known as rhenium-188 and during the treatment a piece of foil is placed over the tumour area with the cream painted on top of it.
It is then removed after one to two hours.
Results of the initial patient trails of the treatment were promising – the skin cancer was cured in 85 percent of patients after just one treatment and after three goes 95 percent had seen their skin cancer disappear.
German technology firm ITM developed the groundbreaking therapy and Oliver Buck, its chief executive, said: “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.”
“The radiation does not affect surrounding tissue and also seems to activate the body’s healing mechanisms,” he added.
“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.”
Buck believes it will be considerably cheaper than current skin cancer treatments and those who are likely to benefit most from the innovation are patients with tumours that cannot be removed surgically.
Additional trials of the cream are now underway in Germany and Australia.
The Healthcare Global magazine is now available on the iPad. Click here to download it.
Introducing Dosis - the AI powered dosing platform
Cloud-based platform Dosis uses AI to help patients and clinicians tailor their medication plans. Shivrat Chhabra, CEO and co-founder, tells us how it works.
When and why was Dosis founded?
Divya, my co-founder and I founded Dosis in 2017 with the purpose of creating a personalised dosing platform. We see personalisation in so many aspects of our lives, but not in the amount of medication we receive. We came across some research at the University of Louisville that personalised the dosing of a class of drugs called ESAs that are used to treat chronic anaemia. We thought, if commercialised, this could greatly benefit the healthcare industry by introducing precision medicine to drug dosing.
The research also showed that by taking this personalised approach, less drugs were needed to achieve the same or better outcomes. That meant that patients were exposed to less medication, so there was a lower likelihood of side effects. It also meant that the cost of care was reduced.
What is the Strategic Anemia Advisor?
Dosis’s flagship product, Strategic Anemia Advisor (SAA), personalises the dosing of Erythropoiesis Stimulating Agents (ESAs). ESAs are a class of drugs used to treat chronic anaemia, a common complication of chronic kidney disease.
SAA takes into account a patient’s previous ESA doses and lab levels, determines the patient’s unique response to the drug and outputs an ESA dose recommendation to keep the patient within a specified therapeutic target range. Healthcare providers use SAA as a clinical decision support tool.
What else is Dosis working on?
In the near term, we are working on releasing a personalised dosing module for IV iron, another drug that’s used in tandem with ESAs to treat chronic anaemia. We’re also working on personalising the dosing for the three drugs used to treat Mineral Bone Disorder. We’re very excited to expand our platform to these new drugs.
What are Dosis' strategic goals for the next 2-3 years?
We strongly believe that personalised dosing will be the standard of care within the next decade, and we’re honored to be a part of making that future a reality. In the next few years, we see Dosis entering partnerships with other companies that operate within value-based care environments, where tools like ours that help reduce cost while maintaining or improving outcomes are extremely useful.
What do you think AI's greatest benefits to healthcare are?
If designed well, AI in healthcare allows for a practical and usable way to deploy solutions that would not be feasible otherwise. For example, it’s possible for someone to manually solve the mathematical equations necessary to personalise drug dosing, but it is just not practical. AI in healthcare offers an exciting path forward for implementing solutions that for so long have appeared impractical or impossible.