Immune System Modulation

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Treatment Response Monitoring

It is very important to monitor the effect of your treatment at regular intervals in order to know whether the treatment is working. If a particular treatment is not working, it may be time to switch to something different. If a change is necessary, it is best to recognize the need as soon as possible, so that time and energy is not wasted on an ineffective treatment regimen. At UC Irvine , physicians and scientists are working on ways to better monitor the effectiveness of treatments quickly and accurately.

Dr. David Hsiang, in a clinical trial available only at UC Irvine , and in collaboration with scientists at the Beckman Laser Institute (BLI), is testing a new technology called the Laser Breast Scanner (LBS). It is his hope that one of the clinical uses of this device will be to better monitor a patient’s response to their treatment. Different types of drugs will affect a tumor in different ways, and this will be one way to measure the effectiveness of a given treatment. If ineffective, doctors can respond quickly and change the treatment plan as needed.

A technology called contrast enhanced MRI, studied by Dr. Lydia Su, is another imaging modality that may be useful in the monitoring of treatment effectiveness. The focus of these research studies is using breast MRI to monitor the response of tumor to allow timely adjustment of treatment protocol. This enables the oncologist to tailor an optimal treatment protocol for each individual patient. MRI is the most sensitive imaging modality to reveal disease extent, also it does not involve any radiation. Therefore, it is the best imaging modality to monitor response.

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