People who suffer from a form of brain cancer called GBM (glioblastoma multiforme) that resists chemotherapy and radiation will soon be able to undergo a less intrusive electrical treatment at home. Recently approved by the FDA, the Novo TTF-100A comprises a cap of electrodes attached to a machine that delivers a low-level electric current directly to the patient’s scalp. Known as Tumor Treatment Fields (TTF), the electricity disrupts the tumor cells‘ shape and electrical configuration such that their rapid growth is either stopped, or even reversed.
The most common form of brain cancer, GBM is also highly resistant to even the strongest radiation and chemotherapy. Those patients who’ve gotten no results from traditional treatment methods will be eligible to use the NovoTTF-100A at home. The cap must be worn at all times, and works either on batteries or plugged into an electrical outlet.
Although the electrical treatment results in more cases of neurological side-effects such as convulsions or headaches, researchers say that users enjoy a better quality of life when compared to current treatments. Removing the nasty chemicals from the equation also eliminates nausea, anemia, fatigue, and infection. Finally, this new technology not only allows intensive cancer treatment to take place in the far sweeter comfort of home, but it is also completely portable.