Abraxane was approved by the FDA for treatment of pancreatic cancer. During trials, the medication prolonged the lives of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. On average, patients lived longer than those treated with chemotherapy alone.
As reported by Reuters, patients taking Abraxane lived an average of two months longer than patients on chemotherapy alone.
Patients given a combination of Abraxane and chemotherapy lived an average of 8.5 months. Those treated with chemotherapy alone survived an average of 6.7 months.
Most significantly, Abraxane was shown to increase the number of patients surviving for two years. The Abraxane trial was the first to record two-year survivors of advanced pancreatic cancer.
As reported by CTV News, Abraxane was developed by Celgene Incorporated. Abraxane is approved and used to treat some forms of breast and lung cancer.
The new medication has increased Celgene’s profits by more than $150 million.
Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest forms of cancer. The symptoms are often subtle until it has spread significantly. By the time patients notice symptoms, the cancer is usually inoperable.
Pancreatic cancer is considered advanced once it spreads from the pancreas to other parts of the body. Abraxane has been specifically successful in treating patients with advanced pancreatic cancer.
An estimated 45,000 patients are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer each year. Close to 38,000 of those patients will die.
As reported by Abraxane.com, the medication is administered through an IV. It is recommended for patients who have not responded, or relapsed, following chemotherapy. It is also recommended for patients who are not candidates for radiation or surgery.
Abraxane is approved by the FDA for advanced forms of breast, lung, and pancreatic cancer.
Side effects are similar to traditional chemotherapy and include hair loss, nausea, and fatigue.
Abraxane offers new hope, and another option, for patients suffering from advanced forms of cancer.
[Image via Wikimedia]