Can fever help interferon or interleukin work better?

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2/20/2011 10:23pm
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Here is an abstract from a recent study that finds that a fever can be beneficial when receiving treatment.

http://meeting.ascopubs.org/cgi/content/abstract/28/15_suppl/8569

It seems that a higher than normal temperature is a sign that the immune system is responding as it should. Could it therefore be that fever-reducing medication should be avoided if possible?

 

Frank

I urge everyone to thoroughly educate themselves about melanoma. No part of this post should be considered to constitute any form of medical advice. Please consult a competent oncologist. (I think that prayer can help in ways that we don't always expect).

Hyperthermia - heat - has long been known to help in cancer treatments.  There even are specific treatments where heat alone is the only treatment.  Hyperthermia has also been shown to enhance chemos and radiation treatments as well.  The company I used to work for designed equipment just for this.  The equipment didn't induce fever, but targeted tumors to heat them.  Tumors don't have the same blood supply that other tissue does, and increased blood circulation is what cools us normally.  Tumors can't cool themselves as quickly as normal tissue so they can be affected by heat.  In addition, heating tumors brings extra oxygen as the blood increase for cooling brings more oxygen.  Extra oxygen helps chemo/radiation work better.  Melanoma and other cancers which tend to be chemo/radiation resistent tend to benefit from the added oxygen when combined with chemo/radiation.  Even tumors that have been radiated once and can't be done again may respond when hyperthermia is added to the radiation treatment.  So personally, my take from all the research I've seen says - if you have a fever, consider it a plus.  It might help!  BTW, hyperthermia has a much bigger audience in Germany/Europe and in China than in the US.