Get personalised treatment plan for each patient: Dr Akshay Kudpaje,Cytecare Cancer Hospitals
The tumour board’s decision puts us one step closer to developing a personalized treatment strategy for each patient: Dr. Akshay Kudpaje, Cytecare Cancer Hospitals.
Head and neck cancer therapy has advanced tremendously. Previously, a mirror was used to examine the voice box, but now there are high-resolution cameras that can go very near to the vocal cord or any other place that would normally be difficult to see.
Dr. Akshay Kudpaje, Senior Consultant and Director, Head and Neck Oncology, Cytecare Cancer Hospitals, was interviewed by Shahid Akhter, editor of ETHealthworld, to learn about the most recent breakthroughs in head and neck cancer care.
Improving the Treatment Curve for Head and Neck Cancer
When compared to how head and neck malignancies were handled a decade ago, therapy has advanced substantially. We used to look at the voice box using a mirror, but now we have high-resolution cameras that can go incredibly near to the vocal cord or any other place that would normally be difficult to see.
We now have endoscopes with narrow-band imaging, which helps us determine if the tumour is malignant or not. That way, we can properly arrange the therapy and consult the patient’s family. All malignancies, including head and neck cancers, are not the same. As a result, the therapy varies. We provide tailored care based on the recommendations of the tumour board, which includes medical oncologists, surgeons, pathologists, and radiologists. The board members meet and devise a unique treatment plan for each patient.
Recent Advances in Head and Neck Cancer
Minimally invasive surgery is a recent advancement in head and neck surgery. Transoral robotic surgery makes use of cutting-edge technology such as lasers and robots to get access to the mouth and neck region without having to cut into the lip or jaw bone. This allows us to remove the malignant tumour while causing minimum harm to the surrounding healthy components. These patients’ post-operative recovery is rapid, and the functional issues associated with surgery are considerably decreased. As a consequence, patients spend less time in the hospital while still receiving cancer treatment.
Consider nasal and sinus cancer, for example, where technology has drastically improved therapy options. We used to have to cut into the face to get to the dangerous tumours. We may now do surgery through the nose without making any exterior incisions thanks to modern technology like the endoscopic sinus surgery navigation system. Similarly, in the event of tumours of the jaw bone or tongue, we can reconstruct the organ by collecting tissues from a distant region after removing the tumour. We have a better grasp of the small vessels with the use of a microscope, which aids in early healing.
The microscope has transformed how skull-based tumours, particularly those at the back of the ear and the lower section of the skull, are controlled with great accuracy. Today, we are more able to manage the delicate nerves in that area, allowing us to provide a higher quality of life to these patients.