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Treatment

 
Treatment

Chapter: 6 - Treatment

Subchapter: 10 - Targeted Therapy

In addition to systemic chemotherapy and hormone therapy, there are newer, more effective treatments that can attack specific cancer cells without harming normal cells. Currently, these targeted methods are commonly used in combination with traditional chemotherapy. However, targeted drugs often have less severe side effects than standard chemotherapy drugs.

Monoclonal Antibodies
One type of targeted therapy currently being studied is monoclonal antibodies. These laboratory-manufactured proteins bind with certain cancers.

Herceptin or Trastuzumab
Monoclonal antibody drugs such as Herceptin (also known as trastuzumab) and Lapatinib target HER2-positive tumors. If cancer cells are positive for the HER2/neu receptors, that means there is an overabundance of receptors on the cancer cell for the growth-stimulating HER2 protein.

The tumor acts almost like a magnet for growth hormones, and when the tumor cells connect with growth hormone cells, the cancer can quickly grow and multiply. Herceptin helps shrink these HER2-positive tumors by finding the cells, binding with them, and blocking the action of the receptor.

Bevacizumab
Another targeted therapy, Bevacizumab, prevents tumors from making new blood vessels that could feed the tumor, essentially cutting off the cancer cells from all nutrients.

As with all medical treatments, if you experience unusual changes in your health during targeted therapy, notify your doctor immediately.

Related Questions

  • Thumb avatar default

    How can you tell a tumor from hard tissue from treatment?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 9 years 2 answers
    • Daphne Beitman Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2009

      Get to know your breasts by doing monthly self exams and note/keep track of any abnormalities you believe you feel. A tumor will grow, normal dense tissue will not. When in doubt have your doctor schedule a mammogram, especially if you're under 40 years old with a family history of the disease....

      more

      Get to know your breasts by doing monthly self exams and note/keep track of any abnormalities you believe you feel. A tumor will grow, normal dense tissue will not. When in doubt have your doctor schedule a mammogram, especially if you're under 40 years old with a family history of the disease. If you you have no family history have a yearly mammogram beginning at 40.

      Comment
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I want to use this medium to share my testimony to the public, hopefully to safe life also, Am Brandi Harri, I was diagnosed of Breast Cancer Three years ago, when i had my last baby, my world came crashing down when my Doctor told me that nothing could be done to save me after fighting this...

      more

      I want to use this medium to share my testimony to the public, hopefully to safe life also, Am Brandi Harri, I was diagnosed of Breast Cancer Three years ago, when i had my last baby, my world came crashing down when my Doctor told me that nothing could be done to save me after fighting this deadly disease with Chemo And Radiation for Two Years but i refused to sit back and wait until the day it finally decides to take my life so i went in search of help which i found in the hands of Priest Babaka through his Cannabis oil/Herb Soap Supplement. God use him to bring life back to me and gave my life a meaning again,am alive now all because of him, sir God will continue to Bless you and your family for this good work and word of truth..If you have any issue of CANCER don't hestitate to contact him with this email : babaka.wolf@gmail.com

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    Does anyone have abdominal pain on taxol/herceptin?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 7 years 3 answers
    • Evelyn Heilbrunn Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2012

      Taxotere gave me diarrhea practically the entire 5-6 months I had chemo. Lots of belly pain and gas, too. Over the counter meds helped -- Immodium, GasX, that sort of thing. Be sure you replenish your electrolytes with Gatorade or Pedialyte. I find it was more tolerable if I mixed it with...

      more

      Taxotere gave me diarrhea practically the entire 5-6 months I had chemo. Lots of belly pain and gas, too. Over the counter meds helped -- Immodium, GasX, that sort of thing. Be sure you replenish your electrolytes with Gatorade or Pedialyte. I find it was more tolerable if I mixed it with club soda.
      Best of luck.

      Comment
    • Bonnie Irwin Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I had bad cramping too while on taxol. Once that passed after a few days it was replaced with joint pain.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    Her2 Er - pr-, what is the new procedures and new treatment?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 7 years 1 answer
    • Margaret Balsamo Profile
      anonymous
      Patient

      There are quite a few factors that will determine your treatment. Your oncologist will discuss all of the options with you.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    My echo came back and my EF is at 47% We are temporarily stopping Herceptin and redoing echo in 4 weeks. I am about 3/4 way done and been fine. Anyone experience this and any suggestions to improve it outside of any meds? Still need to talk with doc.

    Asked by anonymous

    almost 5 years 1 answer
    • Betti A Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2013

      I had an Echo. last August for different reasons on seeing a Cardiologist for a consult due to my blood pressure meds. He indicated I didn't need a stress test due to my activity level being fine without any shortness of breath or other symptoms. Mine came out at 65%, I have a very strong...

      more

      I had an Echo. last August for different reasons on seeing a Cardiologist for a consult due to my blood pressure meds. He indicated I didn't need a stress test due to my activity level being fine without any shortness of breath or other symptoms. Mine came out at 65%, I have a very strong family history. I did give him my radiation treatment numbers since it was to my left side and he asked about my chemo. meds. and if I were taking anything else. I'm on Letrozole for at least 5 years.

      Comment

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