A new treatment for breast cancer can be prepared and administered within five minutes, saving much time from staying hours in hospitals to reduce COVID-19 infection risks.
The said new remedy has already been administered to patients in England by the NHS and will be given to those breast cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy.
For instance, 51-year-old Paula Lamb from Newton-le-Willows received the life-changing treatment and said she was glad that it can now be administered quickly.
She was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2014 and had been spending over two hours in the hospital every three weeks to get treatment, BBC News reported.
“It feels absolutely amazing to be one of the first people to receive this treatment through this NHS scheme,” Lamb said after receiving the remedy at a CCC clinic in St. Helens. “It really could not have come at a better time as lockdown lifts and I can stop shielding.”
Paula’s story – The 5-minute injection that’s replaced her IV infusions for breast cancer Screenshot from YouTube/Clatterbridge NHS
New Breast Cancer Treatment
The new remedy, known as Phesgo, combines the two intravenous infusions of pertuzumab and trastuzumab into a single injection into the thigh.
The treatment will be available to people with HER2-positive breast cancer, which accounts for 15% of all types of breast cancer, according to Science Focus.
NHS England estimated that more than 3,600 patients each year will benefit from the new treatment like Ms. Lamb. She said that transitioning from her current combination of medications that could take up to two hours to the five-minute jab is a real life-changer.
With the freed time from her treatment in the hospital, she has more time to go out for walks, tending to her garden, knitting, and helping her daughter practice cricket.
This echoes what Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “This five-minute injection will be life-changing for cancer patients across the country, allowing them to spend more time away from the hospital and with their loved ones.”
Lesser Time in Hospitals for Cancer Treatment During COVID-19 Pandemic
According to NHS England, the new five-minute jab for treating breast cancer significantly reduces the time spent by cancer patients in hospitals and therefore it also reduces their risks of getting infected by the virus that causes COVID-19.
In 2020, treatment and surgery for cancer patients were cut back due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But later on, hospitals started receiving cancer patients again and at the same time catering to COVID-19 positive patients.
According to PharmaTimes, Breast Cancer Now chief executive Baroness Delyth Morgan said that the approval of Phesgo being used in NHS England is fantastic news as thousands of women with HER2-positive breast cancer will benefit from a quicker and kinder treatment method.
“Reducing the time patients need to spend in hospital, this more efficient treatment method also promises to free up precious time for healthcare professionals when the NHS is already under unprecedented strain due to COVID-19,” she said.
She added that through the collaboration between Roche and NHS decision-makers to ensure the rapid distribution of Phesgo across the UK, more patients and healthcare professionals can benefit from the new treatment.
Check out more news and information on Breast Cancer in Science Times.