WMSN FOX 47
 

FOX 47 - Health News

Wednesday, June 8 2011, 10:45 PM CDT

MADISON (WMSN) -- Until the late actor Patrick Swayze - pancreatic cancer awareness seemed under the radar.


It's the fourth deadliest type of cancer, mainly because there are little symptoms before diagnosis.


Recently - the FDA approved two new drugs to help treat one form of the disease.


"Pancreatic cancer in general does not have many survivors so its been a cancer without a voice," said Dr. Noelle LoConte, UW Medical Oncologist.


It's one of the few cancers where the survival rate hasn't improved in more than 30 years.


Dr. Noelle LoConte says there may be hope after the FDA approved two new drugs to treat pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, the part of the pancreas that secretes hormones.


The first is called Sutent (sunitinib).


"That drug works by impairing the cells from growing their own blood supply its a pill and helped shrink cancer and live long. The other drug is called Afinitor (everolimus). That drug basically impairs the way the cancer cells grow and survive," said Dr. LoConte.


"It gives people that opportunity to fight," said Tammy Andries, cancer survivor.


Tammy Andries is a 5 1/2 year survivor of the disease.


After experiencing kidney stones and back pain, doctors discovered she had a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor, the same size as a grapefruit.


"Surgery was the only option I had available at that time. There's at least another option, out there it gives them hope it gives them a second chance at life," said Andries.


Doctor LoConte says the other, more deadly form of pancreatic cancer, called adenocarcinoma, still has no available treatment.


"Pancreas adenocarcinoma is a much more lethal type of cancer majority of patients who are diagnosed ultimately dies of the disease even if we catch it early enough to do surgery," said Dr. LoConte.


This is why Tammy and other members of the Madison Affiliate of the National Pancreatic Cancer Action Network will head to Washington June 14th to fight for more federal funding.


"Asking congress to approve increases to the budget and by extension national cancer institutes budget it is a big priority," said Barbara Karlen, Advocacy Coordinator.


Something Tammy hopes will happen, so there will be more survival stories like hers.


"Now my kids are 12, 14 and 10 and I've been able to see some of their milestones," said Tammy.


To find out how you can get involved in the Madison Affiliate of the National Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, click here.

FDA approves 2 drugs to treat pancreatic cancer

Video List

Sun. - Fri. on FOX 47 News at 9!

Top Health Headlines (foxnews.com)

How to make your coffee truly healthy

While any coffee will provide some healthy payoffs, you need to pick the right roast, storage strategy, and brew method if you want joe with mojo. Here’s your step-by-step guide to making your coffee its healthiest.


Infertility: Not just a problem for women

Are you having problems getting pregnant? You may be doing all you can to increase your odds, but part – or all – of your struggle with infertility might be to blame on your guy.


How to treat and prevent jock itch

Jock itch can be an irritating—and embarrassing—problem for men. Learn how to treat it


13-1/2 pound boy born at southeastern Pennsylvania hospital

A woman has given birth to a more than 13-pound baby at a southeastern Pennsylvania hospital.


5 budget-friendly ways to get healthy

In the quest to stay healthy and happy, nothing is free: $350 to fill a cavity, $120 for a monthly gym membership, $30 for a yoga class. But you don't need to go broke just to be at your best. The key to paying less? Asking for it.


Advertise with us!

Tonight on FOX 47

11:00am FOX 47 Movie: "Mod Squad"
1:00pm FOX 47 Movie: "Secretariat"
3:30pm Paid Program
4:00pm FOX 47 Movie: "The Proposal"
6:00pm Bob's Burgers
6:30pm American Dad
7:00pm The Simpsons
7:30pm Family Guy
8:00pm COSMOS: A Spacetime Odyssey
9:00pm FOX 47 News at 9
9:35pm The Big Bang Theory
10:05pm The Big Bang Theory
10:35pm The Simpsons
11:05pm The Simpsons


Complete FOX 47 Schedule

To FOX.com

Advertise with us!
IE6 Float Fix