North Kansas City Hospital, KU Hospital and Saint Luke’s all appear to be leading the pack in how to not only discover certain types of cancer but treating them as well. Prostate cancer breakthroughs The biggest leaps seem to be in treating prostate cancer.
North Kansas City Hospital, in partnership with The University of Kansas Cancer Center, is using the new Calypso System for prostate cancer treatment.
The Calypso is referred to as “GPS for the body,” using tiny implanted beacons inside the prostate to track the organ, only allowing precise radiation when the prostate is in range.
This localization technique means less radiation to healthy tissue surrounding the prostate leading to less side effects.
The University of Kansas Cancer Center is also finding better ways to detect prostate cancer, which is very important considering 40 percent of prostate cancer patients will have a reoccurrence.
In Dusing’s case, he’s helped discover that a radioactive carbon molecule he’s created gravitates toward prostate cancer cells like a magnet.
Wherever they appear on imaging, the detected cancer lights up like a Christmas tree.
The discovery is also important because 75 percent of cancer molecules can be missed with a traditional CT-Scan.
An innovative, less invasive technique to discover cancer But over at Saint Luke’s Hospital, doctors are using an inventive method to detect other types of cancer, especially of the lung.
Although a traditional tissue biopsy still needs to be performed to identify most cancers, a “Liquid biopsy” is replacing the alternative route in most instances.
Instead of a procedure to remove more tissue, which can be especially risky and painful for lung cancer patients, doctors are now identifying and monitoring cancer with a simple blood test.
“You start a treatment, and it’s working, you want to know whether it’s working or not, you can do this test. If it is not working, you can find out what’s changed,” said Dr. Janakiraman Subramanian, a hematologist/oncologist with Saint Luke’s Hospital.
Immunotherapy – another breakthrough? KU Hospital is currently using a clinical trial called CAR T-cell therapy.