Since the year 2000, June 8 is celebrated as World Brain Tumour Day. This initiative was initially taken by the German Brain Tumor Association but is now celebrated worldwide to raise awareness and educate people about brain tumour. Hospital campaigns, awareness activities and various healthcare initiatives are observed globally to fight the cause and create an environment for better living. (1)
According to medical research, more than 500 new cases are diagnosed with brain tumour worldwide every day. These harmful brain tumours may originate from neural elements within the brain itself, or they may represent spread of distant cancers from any other organ of the body like lungs, breast, kidney or prostate cancer. Primary brain tumour includes Gliomas, meningiomas, pituitary adenomas and acoustic neuromas. Such tumours are one of the most lethal and difficult to treat. (1)
The theme of World Brain Tumour Day- 2021, is to see the people suffering from this disease as prior and consider their stories, with an aim to build awareness and the necessity for recognition. (2)
Methotrexate for curing brain tumours
On this occasion, let us discuss about Methotrexate (formerly known as amethopterin), a chemotherapy agent and immune-system suppressant. According to research, this drug may cure up to 20% of patients with rare brain tumour. (3)
In a follow-up study of the New Approaches to Brain Tumor Therapy (NABTT) CNS Consortium, investigators at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center in Boston found that of the original 25 PCNSL patients, 12 (52%) achieved complete remission after a minimum follow-up of 6.5 years. Of these individuals, 5 (40%) have not relapsed after a median follow-up of 6.8 years. (3)
Methotrexate belongs to a class of drugs called antimetabolites. It works by slowing down or stopping the growth of cancer cells and suppressing the immune system. (4)
Side effects (4)
This strong medication, usually consumed orally, may cause a few side effects, namely:
- Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, drowsiness or dizziness.
- Temporary hair lossmay occur. Normal hair growth should resume after treatment has ended.
- This medication may lower the patient’s ability to fight infections.
- The doctor must be informed if the patient has any persistent symptoms like mouthsores, diarrhea, signs of anemia (such as unusual tiredness, pale skin), signs of liver problems (such as dark urine, persistent nausea/vomiting, stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin), easy bruising/bleeding, black stools, enlarged glands/lymph nodes, bone pain, unusual pain and discoloration of the skin, signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine), dry cough or muscle weakness.
- A very serious allergic reactionto this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness and trouble breathing.
- It is very important that the doctor check the progress of the patient at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly. Blood and urine tests may be required to be done at regular intervals.
- Using this medicine during pregnancy can harm the unborn baby. The medicine may also cause birth defects if it is used by the father when his sexual partner becomes pregnant.
- This medicine may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, which may be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention.
- Talk with your doctor before using this medicine if you plan to have children. Some men and women who use this medicine have become infertile.
- Limit alcohol use with this medicine since it may increase the risk for liver problems.
- Check with your doctor right away if you have pain or tenderness in the upper stomach, pale stools, dark urine, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, or yellow eyes or skin. These could be symptoms of a serious liver problem.
- Methotrexate can lower the number of white blood cells in the blood, which increases the chance of getting an infection.
Shubham Pharmachem: Scaling new horizons
With manufacturing and distribution services across the globe, Shubham Pharmachem Pvt. Ltd. is always in perfect harmony with such global movements in healthcare. This top Indian brand is vertically integrated in the pharmaceutical industry to provide the best service to all its clients. The organization’s wide array of top-of-the-line products includes Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API), herbal extracts, nutraceutical ingredients as well as cosmetic ingredients.
A leading contributor in the pharmaceutical industry for almost three decades now, constant diversification and dynamic expansion of business activities has resulted in the turnover of the Group to rise northwards by 400% in a short span of 10 years.
For more information, visit www.shubham.co.in
Shubham Pharmachem’s blog posts have been written with the information gathered from approved medical journals and websites online. Our research and technical team strives to provide relevant information through such articles. We strongly advise readers to not consume or administer any medication without prior consultation with their doctor.
- Narayana Health [online]. Available at: https://www.narayanahealth.org/blog/lets-spread-awareness-about-brain-tumor/
- Entri Blog [online]. Available at: https://entri.app/blog/world-brain-tumor-day/
- Medscape [online]. Available at: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/569341#:~:text=Methotrexate%20May%20Cure%20up%20to%2020%25%20of%20Patients%20With%20Rare%20Brain%20Tumor,-Caroline%20Cassels&text=January%2028%2C%202008%20%E2%80%94%20New%20research,long%2Dterm%20remission%20with%20monotherapy.
- WebMD [online]. Available at: https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-3441/methotrexate-anti-rheumatic-oral/details
- MayoClinic [online]. Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/methotrexate-oral-route/precautions/drg-20084837?p=1