Nowadays, cancer treatment in all countries of the world leans on the three pillars: surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. The Western medicine, however, always seeks new ways to treat malignant tumors and searches for more effective methods with fewer side effects. The highest expectations in this sphere are associated with immunotherapy. Immunotherapy in Israel is a treatment method that helps activate the patient’s immune system in order to fight the tumor.
The scope of immunotherapy application in Israel has been growing steadily. Nowadays, this method is used to treat cancer in Israel. Israeli oncologists stay at the leading edge of science by developing and implementing advanced medications only used in a few countries of the world.
How Does Immunotherapy Work?
Scientists believe that human body cells continuously mutate and sometimes produce transformed cells that could start a malignant process. The immune system removes these cells. Sometimes, however, the mutated cells “hide” from the immune system and cause the uncontrolled tumor growth. The surface of these cells contains no antigenic determinants (no signs of malignant transformation). However, these very signs activate antitumor cellular immunity responsible for killing dangerous cells. In other words, a tumor cell simulates a normal cell and therefore survives. The purpose of immunotherapy is to help the immune system identify and destroy cancer cells.
The immunotherapy drugs include interferon, interleukins, monoclonal antibodies, antitumor vaccines, etc. Immunotherapy medications may be produced individually, with the use of lymphocytes isolated from the cancerous tissue. Lymphocytes may be taken either from the patient themselves or from a donor. They are able to destroy tumor cells. Lymphocytes are multiplied in a laboratory and re-introduced into the patient’s body.
When And How Is Immunotherapy Used In Israel?
Early Stages of Cancer
In this case, immunotherapy is used in combination with other treatment methods: chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgical treatment. It is mainly used to prevent cancer recurrence after the surgical removal of the tumor provided there are no distant metastases. The course of treatment in Israel is repeated a few times within the first several years after tumor removal. This is the time when cancer is most likely to recur. Clinical trials show that this type of treatment leads to an approximately twofold increase in the cancer patient survival rates.
Advanced Stages of Cancer
In the advanced stages of cancer, immunotherapy often remains the only treatment method available. At that, it can promote significant (50%) reduction of tumor tissue. Immunotherapy in Israel is provided in two ways:
- Local immunotherapy implies injection of the drugs directly into the tumor area.
- Systemic immunotherapy implies intravenous administration of the drugs.
Immunotherapy in Israel is used for:
What Are The Advantages Of Immunotherapy?
- Fewer side effects. Compared to conventional chemotherapy that harms not only tumor cells but also healthy tissues, immunotherapy is more sparing for the body because it only targets cancerous cells.
- Effectiveness in cases where other treatment methods are ineffective. The studies have shown that in advanced cancer, immunotherapy helps shrink the tumor and improves survival in patients who did not respond to other treatment methods. This includes patients who were treated with chemotherapy for a long time and developed tolerance to chemotherapy agents (this means that chemotherapy is no longer effective for these patients).
- Possible use in combination with other cancer treatment methods. When combined with chemotherapy, immunotherapy enhances the effect of chemotherapy agents.
- Almost nonexistent contraindications. Since immunotherapy is nontoxic, it may be used in virtually all patients including older, weakened and chronically ill patients. Pregnant women and a few people with individual intolerance to the drugs are the only exception.
How To Receive Immunotherapy In Israel?
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