Immunotherapy- Cancer/Oncology, Ear Nose And Throat (ENT), Neurology, Pediatrics

Immunotherapy is defined as the treatment or prevention of diseases by taking measures to increase the immune system functioning. Such measures include the administration of antibodies or by hyposensitization.

The immune system is the system that protect our bodies from diseases and infections caused by foreign substances, cells and tissues by producing the immune response. The immune system is able to carry out this function by producing the immune response and that includes the thymus, spleen, macrophages, white blood cells and most of all, antibodies.

An antibody is a substance produced by the body's immune system to fight diseases. They are also known as immunoglobulins, produced naturally in response to foreign particles invading the body (Antigens) which include microorganisms and viruses.

Immunotherapy is also a form of cancer treatment, and has been employed widely as it helps the body’s immune system fight cancer. It is a type of biological therapy, which involves the use of substances generated by living organisms (either by the body or in a laboratory) to fight cancer. As such, immunotherapy is also referred to as biologic therapy.

Immunotherapy may work by:
  • Preventing cancer from spreading to other parts of the body.
  • Bringing to a halt, or slowing the rate of growth of cancer cells.
  • Assisting the immune system to work better at disrupting cancer cells.
The several types of immunotherapy include:
  • The use of monoclonal antibodies.
  • Non-specific immunotherapy.
  • Oncolytic virus therapy.
  • T-Cell therapy.
  • Cancer vaccines.
The several benefits of immunotherapy include:
  • Helping other treatments of cancer such as chemotherapy work better.
  • It has lesser side effects compared to other forms of treatments.
  • Lesser likelihood for the cancer to return.
However, the possible risks of immunotherapy include:
  • The development of bad reactions such as itching and body swellings.
  • It could cause harm to organs and systems of the body such as the heart, lungs, liver.
  • It requires a long duration of treatment to work effectively.
  • It might not be an effective form of treatment for everyone.
  • The body could develop resistance to immunotherapy treatment.

To learn more about Immunotherapy, please check our blog on IMMUNOTHERAPY FOR CANCER TREATMENT.

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