Ovarian Cancer Drug Will Make "Massive" Difference To Patients, Expert Tells Nick Ferrari

26 July 2019, 12:30

Watch Nick Ferrari's interview with a specialist who says an ovarian cancer drug that has recently been approved for use could offer "a huge quality of life improvement" for patients.

A drug for advanced ovarian cancer has been approved for use in newly diagnosed patients in England, after a trial showed it could delay progression of the disease for three years.

The drug, Olaparib, is for women with advanced ovarian, fallopian-tube or peritoneal cancer who have a specific gene mutation - BRCA - inherited from parents, which increases the risk of breast and ovarian cancer.

Most cases of ovarian cancer are diagnosed late, when there are few treatment options.

Nick Ferrari interviewed Dr Tracey Miles, Information Specialist at The Eve Appeal, Gynaecological Cancer Research Charity about the two main advantages of the drug.

"Huge quality of life improvement"

Dr Miles explained that with the drug the difference for ovarian cancer patients "is going to be massive" because "this is not chemotherapy, this is a novel agent, this is a maintenance agent".

The drug, which she describes as "a maintenance drug" aims to keep patients away from clinicians for "up to three years."

Dr Miles explained that for an ovarian cancer patient, "it's going to be a huge quality of life improvement for her and the family that love her."

Health awareness for families

Dr Miles says she is "totally" for the drug because it will also enable ovarian cancer patients to be tested to see if they have a mutated BRCA gene.

She said the test results will give patients health knowledge, which they can pass on to their families.

If the patient carries the gene, it will enable her family to have "risk-reducing surgery and be more health aware for themselves".