Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer death in the United States and among men and women worldwide. The symptoms usually present at the late stages and the people who are at greater risk are those who smoke but even those who don’t can acquire such illness. Other risk factors include exposure to secondhand smoke, radon gas, asbestos and other carcinogens and a family history of lung cancer.
There are many treatments available for lung cancer such surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, radiosurgery, targeted drug therapy, immunotherapy, and palliative care. Although the possibility for treating lung cancer remains poor, immunotherapy in the form of vaccines is giving a positive effect for survival. Immunotherapy uses your body’s immune system to fight cancer and is usually used for people with advanced stage lung cancer. Such active form of immunotherapy is CIMAvax-EGF. It was developed in Cuba by the Center for Molecular Immunology and the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology. It was approved by the Cuban Regulatory Authority in 2008 to treat adults with advanced stages of lung cancer. In the UK, it is called an EGF, PTI or EGF vaccine.
Though lung cancer is classified as incurable, there is hope of survival when the disease is caught in its early states. CIMAvax-EGF is the first vaccine to treat stage 3 and stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer administered after chemotherapy and radiotherapy. It works by stimulating the body to produce antibodies to slow down the rapid growth of cancer cells turning the late stages of cancer into a chronic disease.
The advantages of CIMAvax-EGF are: increased control of disease; fewer side effects than the usual cancer treatments; it does not attack healthy cells; it is well tolerated by many; safe and immunogenic; helps increase lifespan; and it helps improve quality of life. It is not to be used by people with hypersensitivity to its components, pregnant and lactating mothers, and those with fever although it may be used by people with upper respiratory tract infection but without high temperature. Usual side effects are redness and pain in injection site; shiver headache, vomiting, fever, feeling sick, difficulty breathing, flushings, and irregularities with blood pressure. For severe, abnormal reactions, consult your doctor.
The cost of this vaccine appears to be expensive. Some have a package price of $9,700. This is by CUBANDHEALTH, located at Habana, Cuba. It is recommended to ask your doctor for safety and information about this vaccine or if you are a Canadian citizen, you may call Cancer Information Service to inquire about the treatment.
It is for the meantime important to prevent lung cancer. To reduce risk of developing this disease, don’t smoke; if you are smoking – stop smoking; avoid secondhand smoke; test your home for radon; avoid carcinogens; and observe healthy lifestyle.
This material is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease and should not be relied as medical advice. Always consult your doctor before taking any medication or supplements.