A new isotope treatment has been available for a year at the Clinical Centre of the University of Debrecen. 

More and more patients with tumour lesions originating from neuroendocrine cells are being treated at the Department of Internal Medicine at the Clinical Centre of the University of Debrecen.  The tumours most commonly develop in the gastrointestinal tract and pancreas, as well as in the mucosa of the bronchial tract, but they can arise in almost any organ. 

If the tumour cannot be removed by surgery, it can be treated effectively with special drugs. However, in many cases, the time between the onset of the disease and the first symptoms can be 7-10 years, so patients may be seen late, when metastases have already formed in several organs. In this case, radioisotope therapy may be an effective treatment.

The treatment is based on the fact that the cells of a neuroendocrine tumour contain a special protein that is absent or present in very small amounts in healthy, non-tumour cells. During the treatment, the patient is given 177Lu-oxodotreotide, which binds only to this one protein, and thus only to the tumour cells, with the excess being excreted from the patient’s body in the urine. The preparation contains a radioactive substance which, after binding, reduces or destroys the tumour and its metastases by local radiation.  The treatment requires a specialised background, equipment and expertise, which is available at the Clinical Centre.

The new procedure was first used in Hungary at the Clinical Centre of the University of Debrecen and Semmelweis University in May 2022. The treatment was previously available only in a few European centres.

The procedure is performed by a team of specialists and specially trained medical staff in the Nuclear Medicine building.

Source: dehir.hu | Photo credit: Pixabay (only illustration)

Author: Debrecen4U