People with prostate cancer may soon reduce the daily dose of the drug and to avoid side effects, simply by taking the medicine with food, rather than on an empty stomach.
The effect of Zytiga after a meal may increase its efficiency.
This statement is from a new study recently published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, which suggests that this approach can reduce the cost of expensive treatment of cancer by 75 percent.
Abiraterone acetate (Zytiga) was approved in 2011 for the treatment of metastatic prostate cancer.
It must be taken with prednisone to minimize the risk of side effects that affect the digestive system. However, currently this is the standard drug for the treatment of metastatic prostate cancer.
The recommended dose is 1-month Zytiga is 8000-1000 US dollars, an expensive drug. Many people with prostate cancer take Zytiga for 2-3 years, so the costs associated with their treatment, can reach hundreds of thousands.
Currently, it is recommended to take four 250-milligram tablets Zytiga morning, but paienty should not eat food for a night or for breakfast, can be 1 hour after taking the medicine.
According to study co-author Russell Shmuletvitsa, who is an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Chicago, Illinois, "This schedule is not only inconvenient for the patient, but does not save."
"An effective, but expensive"
A recent review of Zytiga in the New England Journal of Medicine, welcomed the drug to represent "a new standard of care for metastatic disease," but the authors cautioned that "the duration and cost of treatment may influence clinical decisions."
Professor Mark Ratinov, who is director of the Center for Personalized Therapy at the University of Chicago Medicine, believes that the cost of treatment of $ 10 000 per month is a "so-called" financial toxicity. "
"At least three-quarters of the expensive drugs disappear" - continues the professor Ratinov. "It is useless for the body."
Scientists have developed a randomized clinical trial to find out whether there is a more efficient and less expensive way to use Zytiga.
They already knew that Zytiga has a larger "food effect", which means that the amount of the drug is absorbed and enters the human bloodstream, can be multiplied if it is received with the corresponding food.
For Zytiga this means that if the drug is taken with a 300-calorie meal, a person will absorb four to five times more drug compared with if they had taken it without food, as it is currently clinically recommended.
If a person takes Zytiga a 825-calorie meal, the absorption can be multiplied by 10 times.
A lower dose with food "equally effective."
For the study recruited 72 people with advanced prostate cancer. Half took 1,000 milligrams Zytiga as four pills every morning on an empty stomach, as well as current clinical guidelines.
The remaining participants take one 250 mg tablet Zytiga with low-fat breakfast.
The results showed that participants who take a lower dose of Zytiga with low-fat breakfast had comparable results with the group receiving the recommended dose.
Both groups reported about the same time, progression-free survival: about 8.6 months. Researchers measured the extent to which Zytiga lowered levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA), which is a marker of cancer of the prostate.
They found that members of the group with the lowest dose observed a somewhat larger reduction in PSA level.
Since the effect of the drug is comparable in both directions of research, scientists believe that a lower dose of Zytiga food is more economical and convenient, without compromising clinical benefit. The team calculated that this method is receiving Zytiga can reduce costs up to 300 000 dollars per patient.
"The patient gets a simplified schedule, a little more control over their daily lives, comfort eating when he chooses, and the opportunity to save money with your insurance company."
Keep in mind that it is now necessary to conduct additional studies to confirm the results. If you have prostate cancer, you should consult with your doctor before making any changes in medication intake.