Photodynamic therapy using infrared could improve mesothelioma patient outcomes

11 Jan 2017 by under Research/Treatment

research test tubes 100x100 Photodynamic therapy using infrared could improve mesothelioma patient outcomes Research supports , using various treatment tactics, when treating mesothelioma. The deadly cancer, associated with exposure to asbestos fibers, can affect the lining of the lungs, heart or abdomen, and due to a long latency period, mesothelioma is often hard to detect until it has progressed to its later stages, making treatment difficult. Multimodal therapy often includes combinations of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, but it can also include a possibly unexpected tool: light.

(PDT) uses light and a photo-sensitizing drug to kill residual cancer cells, which hold the drug longer than healthy cells, after lung-sparing pleurectomy/decortication surgery removed the pleural lining of the lungs and/or any tumor masses in pleural mesothelioma patients. A study update recently presented at the last annual meeting of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine suggests using an infrared camera to guide the light source during treatment increases effectiveness, according to Surviving Mesothelioma.

The key to effective PDT is uniform light distribution, and eight isotropic light detectors placed inside the pleural cavity currently guide the light, according a summary of the study, conducted by biophysicist Michele Kim and colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania. “But a ‘real-time’ tracking system that incorporates infrared camera technology may allow the user to be more precise with the light delivery, potentially making the treatment more effective and improving mesothelioma survival,” Surviving Mesothelioma states.

The news source reports that the university’s previous PDT studies have some of “the best mesothelioma survival results to date.” A 2013 study showed a median survival time of 31.7 months for the 38 mesothelioma patients who underwent surgery and PDT versus a normal 12 to 24 month survival time after diagnosis.



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