AUSTIN (KXAN) - Some women in the advanced stages of breast cancer might soon lose one of the drugs in their arsenal against the disease.
Once put on the food and drug administration's fast track, a drug called Avastin is now in jeopardy of losing its approval from the food and drug administration to treat breast cancer in its advanced stages. The drug works by cutting off the blood supply to tumors.
"Women receiving Avastin in randomized trials have actually done better than other drugs, but they have not lived longer and that's the major concern," said Dr. Stan Gerson of Cleveland, Ohio.
Avastin can come with side effects such as pain, blood clots and a small risk for heart disease. It also comes with a hefty price tag of $8,000 a month If the FDA does revoke the drug's approval for metastatic breast cancer then insurers may no longer cover the cost of the drug for those women who do benefit. Oncologists say it comes down to what's most cost-effective for most patients.
"The biggest problem is that neither the drug company nor the community of oncologists has exactly figured out which women would benefit the most from Avastin. For the thousands of women with breast cancer, perhaps we need to spend our money more developing better drugs that are more effective," said Gerson.
The looming FDA decision does not apply to Avastin's uses for colon and other cancers.
The final word on its use in breast cancer is expected sometime this month.
Cold temperatures forecast for Saturday morning have prompted Georgetown officials to cancel the parade associated with the annual Christmas Stroll. The Stroll, however, will go on.
A Lago Vista couple faces child endangerment charges after authorities found their home covered in feces and garbage.
The Austin Humane Society reopened to the public Friday after closing its doors for six weeks.
The freezing and near-freezing rain that swooped into Central Texas overnight prompted numerous school closings and delays and made for a harrowing morning commute on Friday.
A man is charged with murder in the shooting death Wednesday of a woman at a North Austin auto repair shop, police said Friday.
The man who fell into a flood control channel and drowned last month was identified Friday as 57-year-old Ronald M. Allen.