Cancer Laser - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/24/05

Cancer Laser

It may look like he's sneaking around in a space-suit, but David Sadler goes to the hospital through a basement door, then takes the freight elevator to the third floor for good reason. That's where he's getting regular injections of something new called Photofrin,which makes his whole body extremely sensitive to light.

"We keep the house kind of dim. We keep the shades pulled down and the curtain drawn in the bedroom. So I pretty much walk around where it's pretty dim, but yeah, I stay away from as much light as possible," says David Sadler, a patient.

David is being treated for pre-cancerous cells in his esophagus. Dr. Fang inserts an endoscopic probe with a laser down his throat. Then, when it's fired up, the pre-cancerous cells absorb the laser light and die. Dr. Fang watches it on this monitor. Inside this white looking tissue are villain cells that have died.

"So we're hoping to completely eradicate all of the high grade displastic cells, cells that are just a hairs breadth away from true invasive cancer," says Dr. John Fang a gastronenterologist.

Dr. Fang says in two treatments, he can see that pre-cancerous cells are gone,so there is no need for surgery. Since the injections make David so sensitive to light, he will wear the protective clothing for another six weeks, until the Photofrin wears off. It is FDA approved in the treatment of Barettes Esophagus, a condition that results from prolonged heartburn in which the normal lining of the lower part of the esophagus is replaced, over time, by another type of lining normally present in the stomach. Continued reflux may cause dysplastic changes progressing from low-grade to high-grade dysplasia. Such dysplasia may lead to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma, a life-threatening condition.

For more information, on Photfrin treatment, visit: ( photofrin.com).

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