Breaking news Emails
Receiving news and special reports. The news and stories that are important gave morning on weekdays.
By Erica Edwards
The doctor told him he had pancreatic cancer and he would have only 1
Then Bastian decided to seek another opinion at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. There he got a completely different prognosis: surgery – and longer survival – was possible.
"If patients are treated appropriately and we can predict that their long-term outcome will be excellent, it's worth it. Mark Tracy, a surgical oncologist at the Mayo Clinic.
Approximately one third of cases of pancreatic cancer have been detected in stage 3. Approximately half of the patients with pancreatic cancer diagnosed at this stage are estimated to be looking for their care. other doctors said their tumors can not be surgically removed. His team's approach to the treatment of pancreatic cancer in stage 3 is different from most other oncology practices. Truti believes this is the wrong approach. "You will be very disappointed if you expect this," said Truty for NBC News.
The Mayo Clinic approach works in the following way: Patients receive prolonged, personalized chemotherapy to tumor marker levels in the blood. called CA 19-9 fall to normal limits. Then, if PET scanning shows that the tumor is destroyed, doctors move forward with radiation and surgery.
Among the 194 pancreatic cancer treated in this way in the Mayo Clinic, 89% lived longer than the expected 12 to 18 months. The approach has led to an average survival of up to five years after diagnosis, according to a Mayo Clinic study.
And for one third of the patients in the study, Truty said his team "can not even calculate their average survival because they are alive and do very well. "
Outside experts on pancreatic cancer say that Mayo's approach is exciting. "It is truly remarkable to be able to achieve this," says Allison Rosenwave, Senior Manager of Scientific and Clinical Communications on the Pancreatic Cancer Network.
Cancer. Some do not respond to the chemotherapy needed to kill tumor cells. Others are too ill to tolerate therapy.
Pancreatic cancer was given national attention in March when the host "Jeopardy!" Alex Trebek revealed he was diagnosed with the disease. Trebecek, 78, said his cancer was very advanced – stage 4. Pancreatic cancer usually means that the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. The Mayo Clinic approach is only for patients treated with stage 3 disease.
The US Cancer Agency estimates that 56,770 people will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the United States this year. More than 45,000 will die of the disease. Rosenzweig explains that the pancreas is hidden deep in the abdomen, making it hard to see in the image. Symptoms are often unclear: lower back pain, weight loss, upset stomach
Bill Bastian says that in addition to mild stomach pain, he feels good when diagnosed.
He and his wife, Linda, to mark the fourth year after diagnosis in August.
"I feel very happy," Bastian said. "I feel lucky to be vertical, over the ground and move and do everything I've done before."