The gold standard for first-line treatment has been surgery, but not every patient qualifies, and even some who do have procedures don’t obtain disease control. Recently, scientists have been second-guessing surgery as a first-line treatment.
Unfortunately, treating acromegaly with medication isn’t a cure-all either.
I’m not implying that any of these new treatments can fix everything associated with acromegaly, but they do give those living with the condition new reason for hope.
In 2014, a treatment was approved by the FDA featuring long-acting release. Pasireotide, as it’s generically known, is available for patients who have been unable to achieve disease control following surgery, or for those who are not eligible for surgery.
Somatoprim and Temodar could help those who don’t experience the desired results on current medications.
There’s also octreotide, which is being studied with subcutaneous (under the skin – injection) administration, and through oral administration. It’s thought that this drug, regardless of how a patient chooses to take it, could increase biochemical control of acromegaly (think, “help control growth hormone levels”) while also providing a more tolerable long-term treatment since patients get to decide how to take it.
So, yes, it’s never great to be living with a chronic condition, whether it’s acrogemaly or anything else. But the news isn’t all doom and gloom.
We live in an exciting time during which treatments are available and more progress is being made to improve upon those treatments.
If you’ve got to live with acromegaly, wouldn’t you prefer that it be now and not, say, 100 years ago?