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U.S. Pays Highest Prices for Cancer Meds: Study

Posted 6 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 6, 2016 – The United States pays the highest prices in the world for generic and brand-name cancer drugs, a new study has found. However, as the world's wealthiest nation, the United States is better able to pay for those pricey drugs than poorer countries with somewhat lower medication prices, added study lead author Dr. Daniel Goldstein. People in China and India are much less able to afford cancer drugs than Americans, he said, even though U.S. monthly drug prices are about three to six times higher in the United States. That doesn't mean America came out on top in overall drug affordability, however. Developed nations such as Australia, England and Israel had the "best deal" in the world on cancer drugs, thanks to government programs that regulate drug pricing, the study found. "America is the wealthiest nation, but its drug prices are significantly higher – so much ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Isotretinoin, Rituxan, Claravis

Xalkori Approved For Rare Genetic Form of Lung Cancer

Posted 11 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 11, 2016 – Xalkori (crizotinib) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with tumors that have a rare ROS-1 gene mutation. The drug was approved in 2011 to treat advanced NSCLC that was related to an abnormal ALK gene, the agency said Friday in a news release. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States. Last year, more than 221,000 cases were diagnosed and more than 158,000 people died from it, the FDA said. Clinical studies of 50 people with ROS-1-positive NSCLC found that about two-thirds of participants treated with Xalkori had their tumors partially or completely shrink for an average of 18 months, the agency said. The drug's most common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, swelling, constipation, elevated liver enzymes, fatigue, loss of appetite and upper ... Read more

Related support groups: Lung Cancer, Xalkori

FDA Expands Use of Xalkori (crizotinib) to Treat ROS-1 Positive Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Posted 11 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

March 11, 2016 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved Xalkori (crizotinib) to treat people with advanced (metastatic) non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) whose tumors have an ROS-1 gene alteration. Xalkori is the first and only FDA approved treatment for patients with ROS-1 positive NSCLC. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, with an estimated 221,200 new diagnoses and 158,040 deaths in 2015, according to the National Cancer Institute. ROS-1 gene alterations, thought to lead to abnormal cells, have been identified in various cancers, including NSCLC. ROS-1 gene alterations are present in approximately 1 percent of patients with NSCLC. The overall patient and disease characteristics of NSCLC with ROS-1 gene alterations appear similar to NSCLC with anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) gene alterations, for which crizotinib use was ... Read more

Related support groups: Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Xalkori, Crizotinib

U.S. Oncologists Decry High Cost of Cancer Drugs

Posted 23 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 23, 2015 – Soaring costs for cancer drugs are hurting patient care in the United States, a group of top oncologists claim. "High cancer-drug prices are affecting the care of patients with cancer and our health care system," Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said in a Mayo news release. Tefferi and his colleagues made a number of recommendations on how to address the problem in a commentary published July 23 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices is one of the suggestions the team of 118 leading cancer experts offered as a possible solution. Along with their recommendations, the group also expressed support for a patient-based grassroots movement on change.org that is demanding action on the issue. "The average gross household income in the U.S. is about $52,000 per year. For an insured patient with ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Femara, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Colorectal Cancer, Isotretinoin

Medicines Are Biggest Culprit in Fatal Allergic Reactions: Study

Posted 10 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Oct. 9, 2014 – Although food allergies have garnered a lot of attention lately, a new study reports that medications are actually the biggest cause of sudden deaths related to allergy. Over a little more than a decade, nearly 60 percent of the allergy-related deaths were caused by medications, while less than 7 percent were caused by food allergies, the study found. "Medications can be dangerous," said study researcher Dr. Elina Jerschow, director of the Drug Allergy Center at Montefiore Medical Center and assistant professor of medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in New York City. While research from other countries has reported medications as a major culprit in anaphylaxis-related deaths, Jerschow said, the problem has been less defined in the United States. One reason is that there is no national registry for anaphylaxis deaths, she said. The study was ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Amoxicillin, Metronidazole, Doxycycline, Cephalexin, Clindamycin, Penicillin, Methotrexate, Azithromycin, Bactrim, Cipro, Ciprofloxacin, Accutane, Augmentin, Levaquin, Lupron, Flagyl, Keflex, Zithromax

Experimental Drug Shows Promise for Drug-Resistant Lung Cancer

Posted 26 Mar 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 26, 2014 – A new drug may help lung cancer patients when they become resistant to the first-line medication crizotinib, researchers find. Although crizotinib (brand name Xalkori) causes regression of a specific type of lung cancer, patients become resistant to it within about a year. But the new drug, ceritinib, seems effective against this type of lung cancer – called advanced ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer – according to the results of early trials. "Ceritinib is even effective after the first-generation drug crizotinib has stopped working," said lead researcher Dr. Alice Shaw, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School in Boston. Preliminary results from this study led the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to give ceritinib a "breakthrough therapy" designation and led the drug's manufacturer to recommend accelerated approval, she said. ... Read more

Related support groups: Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Xalkori, Crizotinib

Cancer Chemotherapy Tied to Slight Rise in Risk for Leukemia

Posted 14 Feb 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 14 – Chemotherapy can be a lifesaver for thousands of cancer patients, but a new study suggests that it might slightly raise the odds for a type of leukemia later in life. Over the past 30 years, the risk for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) has increased for patients who underwent chemotherapy for certain forms of cancer, particularly non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the new study found. On the other hand, the researchers from the U.S. National Cancer Institute said other cancer survivors may have a reduced risk for AML due to a change in chemotherapy agents that occurred decades ago. One expert not connected to the study stressed that cancer patients need to put the findings into perspective. "It's important to realize that the risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia related to prior chemotherapy is small and increases with the number of chemotherapy treatments given over time," ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Accutane, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Isotretinoin, Rituxan, Claravis, Votrient, Anastrozole, Avastin

Experimental Drug Helps Fight Some Childhood Cancers, Study Finds

Posted 16 May 2012 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 16 – A new targeted drug therapy may help treat certain advanced cancers in children, a new preliminary study indicates. In some cases, the oral medication even made tumors disappear after regular cancer treatments had failed, the researchers reported. "This is an exciting first step, and it looks very promising for kids who have had very few options," said study author Dr. Yael Mosse, an assistant professor of pediatrics in the division of oncology at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Mosse is scheduled to present the findings on June 2 at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting in Chicago. However, ASCO released the results during a news conference Wednesday. Funding for the study was provided by the drug's manufacturer, Pfizer Inc. The new drug is called crizotinib (Xalkori), and it targets abnormalities in a gene called ALK that's present in ... Read more

Related support groups: Lymphoma, Xalkori, Crizotinib

Mixed News on Tough-to-Treat Lung Cancer

Posted 10 Jan 2012 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 10 – Dutch researchers report disappointing results from an early clinical trial of the drug Nexavar (sorafenib) in fighting a tough-to-treat form of lung cancer. But, in better news, an experimental drug known as ganetespib showed promise in laboratory and animal experiments. The results of both studies were to be presented Tuesday at an American Association for Cancer Research/International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer meeting in San Diego. In recent years, researchers have made some headway in finding treatments to combat lung cancer, which often doesn't respond well to chemotherapy, explained Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society. Those treatments include drugs such as crizotinib (Xalkori) and erlotinib (Tarceva), which are most effective in tumors that contain certain genetic mutations. However, those drugs tend ... Read more

Related support groups: Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Tarceva, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Nexavar, Xalkori, Erlotinib, Sorafenib, Crizotinib

Targeted Drugs, Lung CT Screening Top Cancer Advances in 2011

Posted 6 Dec 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 6 – As the war against cancer continues, a group representing U.S. oncologists has picked its "Top Five" list of advances in cancer care for 2011. Leading the list are approvals for a bevy of new, targeted drugs for tough-to-treat malignancies, plus promising results suggesting CT chest scans may be an early-detection screen for lung cancer. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) this week issued its annual report on progress against cancer. The report was published online Dec. 5 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. "The big news has been targeted drug therapy," noted Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang, head of the section of genitourinary cancer at the Nevada Cancer Institute in Las Vegas and co-executive editor of the report. "We now have drugs that are very selective for some solid tumors. We now have [new] drugs affecting melanoma and lung cancer, which is pretty ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Aromasin, Exemestane, Xalkori, Zelboraf, Vemurafenib, Yervoy, Crizotinib, Ipilimumab

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