New treatment gives lung cancer patients more than an extra year of life

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However, because of its price there are big chances that while the drug has remarkable success in many countries it will become just one of a raft of those other immune boosting drugs recommended by medics in tackling a range of hard-to-treat cancers but not really covered by our insurances.

The results of the trial for nivolumab were presented one day ago at the American Society for Clinical Oncology in Chicago. 600 patients having one common type of advanced lung cancer participated in this trial. The patients given another chemotherapy drug Docetaxel lived just eight more months compared to those who were given nivolumab who lived more than 19 months on average after diagnosis. Some patients who were on nivolumab are still alive and tumour-free and this gives cancer patients great hopes.

In the United States Nivolumab has now been approved for use. Its makers Bristol-Myers Squibb are selling it under the brand name Opdivo. However, it still remains to be seen if the drug will be approved by European authorities. In Great Britain experts believe that this wonder immune-boosting drug will be turned down for routine use on the NHS because it is currently so pricey.

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