Doctors: Latest brain scan is good news for Jimmy Carter

7 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Churchgoers gasp as former US president Jimmy Carter, 91, reveals his brain cancer is gone.

ATLANTA — A recent MRI showing no cancer on Jimmy Carter’s brain is “very positive” news for the former president but will not end his medical treatment, doctors said. ATLANTA — Jimmy Carter said Sunday that his most recent brain scan showed no signs of cancer, more than three months after he began treatment for four melanoma tumors.The 91-year-old Nobel peace laureate and global humanitarian recently had a tumor removed from his liver, only to find four melanoma spots on his brain. The two-sentence statement followed reports that he had shared the good news with a Sunday school class at Maranatha Baptist Church in Carter’s hometown of Plains, Ga. “I went to the doctors this week for the second time,” Carter said in a video posted on Twitter by NBC News. “The first time I went for an MRI of my brain, the four places were still there but they were responding to the treatment.

Carter said he will continue every three weeks to receive the drug, Keytruda, one type of “immunotherapy” that melanoma specialists credit for improving treatment of the disease without the side effects of traditional chemotherapy drugs that can cause hair loss and other symptoms, said Dr. The drugs also have shown promise as a “long-lasting” treatment, but doctors continue to learn more as the drugs are used outside of clinical trials, he said. “So many cancer treatments can be effective in the short-term, causing tumors to shrink,” he said. “Immune therapy, in at least a subset of patients, has truly long-lasting responses.” Carter has said he experienced no side effects during treatment, a positive sign for his doctors, said Dr. While about 30 per cent of patients treated with the drug experience significant shrinkage of their cancer, only approximately 5 per cent experience complete remission, said Dr Marc Ernstoff, director of the melanoma programme at the Cleveland Clinic’s Taussig Cancer Institute in Ohio. And when I went this week, they didn’t find any cancer at all.” Jill Stuckey, a church member who helps organize Carter’s lessons, said that “our prayers have been answered.

Keith Flaherty, a melanoma specialist at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Termeer Center for Targeted Therapies who is not involved in Carter’s treatment. “If (a patient) breaks the right way, the likelihood that he will do well in the short term is extremely high,” Flaherty said. “There have been instances of relapse two to three years in while using immunotherapy treatment, but you’d say there is a good reason to be quite optimistic. Critics derided his 1977-1981 presidency as a failure, although he played a key role in negotiation of the 1978 Camp David peace accord between Israel and Egypt. I can’t think of a better Christmas present.” Carter has remained active, volunteering on a building project with Habitat for Humanity and continuing to work at The Carter Center, the human rights organization he founded after leaving the White House. At President Carter’s age, it’s very likely he’s going to enjoy an excellent quality of life.” But doctors caution that they are still learning about the long-term effect of Keytruda and similar drugs, which have only received approval for wide patient use in the last five years. “President Carter’s doctors certainly will continue close surveillance as they would for any patient in this situation,” said Dr.

Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer for the American Cancer Society. “One hopes that by using immunotherapy the body can respond to whatever happens but cancer cells are clever and can develop workarounds for the various treatments.” Doctors will continue to scan Carter’s brain and the rest of his body to ensure the disease hasn’t spread, Johnson said. But the former peanut farmer built one of the most successful post-White House legacies, winning a Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 and remaining active into his 90s in causes such as fighting disease in Africa and building homes for the poor.

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