How Innovations in Cancer Treatments Help Patients
How Innovations in Cancer Treatments Help Patients
It is October, which means it is the month the World Health Organization (WHO) designated as the Pink Month to raise breast cancer awareness. In hoping that the number of affected women and men decreases, the WHO dedicated efforts during October to educate those affected on early symptoms and detection. It is a fact that, with modern technology, 90% of early-stage breast cancers are curable. We take a closer look at some innovations in cancer treatments and how they can help patients with this harrowing experience.
Breast Cancer in the United States
Each year in the United States, oncologists diagnose about 264,000 breast cancer cases in women and 2,400 in men. About 42,000 women and 500 men in the U.S. die yearly from breast cancer. New cancer technologies can help decrease the number of affected people, and digital health can perhaps help with racial and ethnic disparities below:
The median age for black women diagnosed with breast cancer is 60, compared to white women at 63.
Black women have the highest death rate from breast cancer.
Black women have a higher chance of developing breast cancer before the age of 40 than white women.
At every age, Black women are more likely to die from breast cancer than any other race or ethnic group.
The latest innovations in cancer treatment helped with the overall decrease in cases. Breast cancer diagnosis was higher before 2000 but had been steadily and slowly dropping. That still doesn’t change the fact that we have a long way to go and that it remains to be seen just how the latest technologies will affect the disease. For now, 1 in 8 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime. However, with new technology for cancer treatment, this disease is beatable.
Factors Increasing Breast Cancer Risk
Studies show multiple factors contribute to breast cancer development. Some of these you can control, and some you can’t. Below is a non-exhaustive list of factors contributing to this disease’s development.
Factors You Can’t Control:
Sex: Breast cancer is 100 times more common in women than men.
Age: Most invasive breast cancers are found in women ages 55 or older.
Genetics: Women with mutated BRCA1 genes have a 55-72% chance of developing breast cancer. The average woman’s risk sits at 12%.
Factors You Can Control:
Exercise: a little exercise goes a long way. With many innovations in cancer treatment comes a simple deterrent for the disease: working out. Women who are not physically active have a higher chance of getting cancer.
Being overweight: overweight women have a higher chance of getting cancer than those who are closer to a healthy weight.
Drinking alcohol: women who regularly drink alcohol are at a higher risk of breast cancer. Additionally, consuming alcohol increases the risk of getting five other cancer types: mouth and throat, voice box, esophagus, colon and rectum, and liver.
Technology in Cancer Research and Treatment
With the rise of digital technology came new ways for us to combat this deadly disease. A cancer-free future isn’t unimaginable, but we must perfect technologies that help us with early detection and treatment. Below are some of the modern methods of fighting cancer.
Precision medicine refers to personalized treatment focused on a group of people or individuals. Precision oncology refers to studying individual patient’s genetic makeup and molecular characteristics of cancer tumors. From there, it becomes possible to develop personal treatment, including a personalized cancer vaccine.
AI is one of the technologies that are the future of cancer treatment. We can teach machine learning algorithms to scan for common types of cancers, such as breast cancer. Doctors already use artificial intelligence for digital technologies and data in their practice (such as examining X-rays), and AI is already capable of detecting cancers invisible to the naked eye.
This treatment relies on removing and altering patients’ immune cells, called T cells. In doing so, by introducing these cells back into the body, they hunt down cancer cells. This treatment has already proven successful, so it remains to be seen just how valuable this technology will be in the future.
Telemedicine and Oncology
With telemedicine, we are seeing the future of cancer treatment today. In the wake of COVID-19, care providers realize the benefit of the historically underused telehealth services. However, during the pandemic, people realized just how valuable this technology is, especially for patient groups who were suffering from chronic or ongoing conditions. Telemedicine offers many benefits for people who are fighting cancer, such as:
Immediate Access to Care
With digital platforms, patients can reach out to their care providers and get feedback almost in real-time. From quick scans to remote diagnosis, digital solutions offer the speedy delivery of quality care.
Through digital solutions, groups at higher risk of infection can avoid the waiting area and thus reduce the spread of an infectious disease. This is an invaluable benefit of cancer treatment technology for patients with cancer.
Bypass Geographical Limitations
Like with any other ongoing disease, patients stuck at their homes couldn’t reach their care providers and receive the care they needed. Telemedicine takes care of that problem by offering remote patient monitoring, a way in which doctors and patients remain connected anywhere in the world. This allows for quick and real-time updates to conditions, medication adherence, or treatment options.
While we can’t cure cancer, we can help. Vicert has spent the last three decades developing software for your specific needs, offering a number of digital solutions. We can aid those in need with remote patient monitoring services and other innovations in cancer treatments. Book a call with us and find out more!
Stats You Should Know:
- The two most significant factors contributing to the development of breast cancer in women are sex and age.
- In 2022, an estimated 287,850 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S, making it the most common cancer in American women. Every two minutes, a woman in the U.S. is diagnosed with the disease.
- Doing an annual mammogram, exercising, and reducing drinking and smoking positively affect cancer outcomes.
- Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women in the United States.
- In 2020, there were 684 996 deaths from breast cancer globally.