Nuclear medicine ward at Delhi State Cancer Institute now open to patients
NEW DELHI: Delhi State Cancer Institute has become the first Delhi government hospital where treatment through nuclear medicine is available.
Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam on Saturday inaugurated the nuclear medicine ward. The seven-bed ward will begin admission of patients from Monday.
"The ward will help many patients here and we will be able to cure a higher number of patients," a senior doctor at the hospital said.
He added that the hospital has also recruited new doctors to handle the new ward.
"Many patients opt for this treatment as it has fewer health hazards. Earlier, we were not able to fulfil the patients' wish. But now, things will change," he said.
The doctor further explained that nuclear medicine therapy is a special technique based on isotopes.
"The radioactive compounds used in nuclear medicine for diagnosis or treatment has great potential for treatment of cancer, especially for cancer cells that have migrated from primary tumours to lymph nodes and secondary organs such as bone marrow," he said.
These disseminated tumour cells can be difficult to treat with a single targeting agent as there are dramatic differences in the number of targetable receptors on each cell.
For nuclear medicine treatment, isolation of patients is necessary.
To satisfy this need, the Delhi government has setup single cabins for patients.
According to doctors, a new era of cancer treatment would start in Delhi with the advent of nuclear medicine.
"Earlier, patients used to go to private hospitals and spend exorbitant sums to get this treatment. But from now on, we can provide the treatment at an affordable rate," another senior doctor said.
Delhi Health Minister Satyender Jain had earlier said that the government would ensure affordable cancer treatment for all.
The Health department is likely to set up more nuclear medicine wards in other hospitals.