Skin Cancer Trial Results Look Promising

With summer just peeking around the corner, it’s time to slather on layers of sunscreen to get the best coverage against the strong sun’s UV rays after a long day of tanning and sitting in the sun. After all, it was only just a few years ago that the average survival of skin cancer was a mere six months. Thanks to new advancements and trials, two new international trials against skin cancer have been hailed as “exciting and striking.” The two treatments are designed in order for the immune system to detect and recognize tumors and its findings were released at the American Society of Clinical Oncology conference in Chicago. What it is is that the experimental drugs, pembrolizumab and nivolumab, block the biological pathway cancers use to disguise themselves from the immune system. Genius, right?!

John Wagstaff, professor of medical oncology at Swansea College of Medicine, is part of a larger trial of these two drugs.¬†Wagstaff said: “I am convinced that this is a breakthrough in treating melanoma.” And the athlete isn’t the only one with that mentality!

While this all sounds amazing and great, there’s one slight/possible drawback: it’s still early. Doctors urge the trials with caution and the real results.¬†Like many drugs, the experimental treatments do tend to have their side effects. In fact, Warwick Steele admitted he experienced night sweats and even had two brief blackouts when on the new drug. Only time that will act like a cactus plat.

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

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