The giant steps that medicine has taken in the fight against cancer have created great prospects in treatment and prevention. In a recent interview Professor Armando Santoro, Director of the Cancer Center at Humanitas, spoke about prevention, lifestyles and progresses in the fight against cancer.


Prevention and Lifestyle

“A great deal can be achieved with the proper lifestyle and with primary and secondary prevention. Your lifestyle should have a few simple rules: keep your ideal weight, eat healthy, drink responsibly, don’t smoke. Prevention, another great asset in this battle, consists in examinations, tests and screenings (especially for colorectal cancer, cervix and breasts).
Much remains to be done, there is more that needs to be addressed, but finally we are beginning to see the light in this difficult and complex path”, Professor Santoro explains.


Progress in healing

“In the last fifteen years there was a great progress in healing and chances of survival. Many tumors, unlike in the past, are now long-term illnesses. The most frequent tumors, such as breast cancer, colorectal cancer and some types of lymphomas and melanomas, have healing percentages around 70-80% and a life expectancy one couldn’t dream of only a few years ago”.


Progress in treatment

“A great progress also happened in this case, with less invasive and heavy treatments. Toxicity levels are minimal in surgery (laparoscopic and robotic surgery). The same is true in radiotherapy (stereotactic therapy) and in pharmacology (targeted therapy and immunotherapy)”, the professor concluded.