Noting that cancer is an increasing health problem, Assoc. Dr. Nalan Alan Selçuk shared important information about ‘nuclear medicine treatment methods’ and success rates. Stating that atomic therapy has been used especially in the treatment of thyroid cancer since the early 1940s, Assoc. Dr. Nalan Alan Selçuk said, “For the last 20 years, we have started to use this treatment extensively in tumors originating from neurons and nerve cells originating from the intestine and stomach, which we call prostate cancer and neuroendocrine tumors, and liver tumors.”
“THESE MOLECULES ARE TARGET AND FIND THE ORGANIZED TO GO”
Stating that radioactive substances are sent to the body in doses that will not harm the person in atomic treatment, Assoc. Dr. Nalan Alan Selçuk said, “One of the treatments we have recently called targeted therapies or smart therapies is atom therapy. These targeted molecules, which can find the organ they will go to, are marked in the nuclear medicine laboratory and are usually given to the patient through a vein. The molecules find the target and enter the cell. Here. “It only destroys the tumor tissue. By giving less radiation to other parts of the body, a safer, selective treatment method is provided.”
“FIRST STEP ATOMIC TREATMENT IN A MAJOR THYROID CANCER”
Providing information about the types of cancer in which atomic therapy is applied, Assoc. Dr. Selcuk said:
“Features such as the size of the tumor, its pathological type, and its spread pattern, such as the presence of lymph node spread in the neck, determine whether the patient will receive atomic therapy. By atomic therapy, we mean ‘iodine 131’ therapy. Usually, these patients are treated with iodine over 90%. Of course, the amount of tissue left after the surgery, the iodine capture capacity of the thyroid gland, and the type of the disease are factors that increase the success of treatment. Pancreatic cancer is known among the people as a rapidly progressing and lethal type of cancer. The progression of pancreatic cancer is mostly rapid and the treatment options are compared to the normal cell type. However, if the cell type of the pancreas contains neuroendocrine, these diseases can be treated. It is possible for us to improve the patient’s quality of life by stopping the progression of the tumor or the tumor.”
IF IT IS NOT RESPONDING TO SURGERY OR CHEMOTHERAPY?
Explaining that neuroendocrine cancers are a common tumor of many organs, especially stomach, intestine, pancreas, lung and thyroid, Yeditepe University Hospitals Nuclear Medicine Specialist Assoc. Dr. Selçuk said, “In these cancers, we use atomic therapy in advanced patients who do not have a chance for surgery or do not respond to chemotherapy. Because patients who come to nuclear medicine are now patients in the 3rd and 4th stages of cancer. Patients who have lost the classical methods used in cancer treatment, namely surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Because these patients have come to us recently, their life expectancy is short. Despite this, our aim is to stop these diseases, to prolong the life of people and to improve their quality of life. It has been demonstrated by current data that neuroendocrine tumors contribute to the treatment of 82 percent of advanced diseases. These patients told us that they had lost hope. It’s coming in, and the rates can still be pleasing,” he said.