Could combining two forms of treatment at the same thing increase the lifespan of women suffering from advanced endometrial cancer?
Here’s all you need to know.
What Studies Say: The first study, titled Pembrolizumab Plus Chemotherapy in Advanced Endometrial Cancer, found that when the standard chemotherapy drugs carboplatin and paclitaxel are combined with pembrolizumab, which is an immunotherapy drug, the risk of the tumour returning or recurrent endometrial cancer is cut down by nearly 70 percent.
The study stated,
“In patients with advanced or recurrent endometrial cancer, the addition of pembrolizumab to standard chemotherapy resulted in significantly longer progression-free survival than with chemotherapy alone.”Study Authors
The second study, titled Dostarlimab for Primary Advanced or Recurrent Endometrial Cancer, used Dostarlimab, an immune-checkpoint inhibitor, along with chemotherapy drugs.
The study stated,
“Dostarlimab plus carboplatin–paclitaxel significantly increased progression-free survival among patients with primary advanced or recurrent endometrial cancer, with a substantial benefit in the dMMR–MSI-H population.”Study Authors
However, the study also mentioned that during this treatment, nausea, alopecia, fatigue, and “severe and serious adverse events” were frequent.
Why This Could Be A Gamechanger: The progression of the disease in the patients who took this drug combination happened only after 13.1 months on average, instead of the 8.7 months seen in other patients.
Additionally, the drug combination worked wonders in women who were struggling with a mismatch repair-deficient tumour.
In fact women suffering from this specific tumour who had only been receiving chemotherapy saw the disease progressing in about 7.6 months, while the women taking the drug combination did not face this even after a year.
What Next? These studies are important because so far only chemotherapy is being used for treating endometrial cancers. Immunotherapy is usually a back-up option for people suffering from this cancer.
However, it remains to be seen how the findings of these studies would be used in treatment methods from now on.