Precision medicine, a medical model, developed on the findings of genetic insights, and a comprehensive understanding of the human physiology, is gaining popularity over the past few years. This understanding is crucial in warding off the unwanted side effects of medicines. Moreover, precision medicine also helps in cutting down treatment expenses. That’s because it helps to discard fruitless treatment plans that do not have any supporting data insights.
Doctors prescribe precision medicine to choose treatments based on a genetic cognizance of a particular disease. And thereby and come up with personalized treatment plans. Precision medicine banks on the idea that a disease condition varies from one individual to the other.
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With time, it has become more evident that the medicine which suits one individual might not suit the others as well. For instance, a particular treatment that can cure someone’s arthritis or tumor wouldn’t be equally effective for someone else. Specific tests are essential to measuring how different someone’s cancer or arthritis is from another individual suffering from the same condition. A particular type of treatment might not be equally effective for everyone. This is where precision medicine comes into play.
It’s all about giving the right medicine to the right individual. But, this isn’t the case yet for every ailment. A lot needs to be done in the times to come. Irrespective of how great the idea of precision medicine might sound. Currently, most doctors treat all the patients suffering from a similar condition, using the same drug. However, the day is not far away when every single person would have treatments that are entirely dependent on their type of genetics.
How Is Precision Medicine Revolutionizing Healthcare?
Precision medicine has made significant changes in the treatment of deadly diseases such as cancer. Researchers have been unearthing new ways to classify tumors. The genetics of a few breast cancers tend to be more similar to some stomach tumors than common breast cancers. Precision medicine is playing a pivotal role in treating genetically similar diseases quite effectively. For instance, Gleevec is a drug that is effective in treating leukemia when the cancer cells are genetically made up in the same way. Hence, rather than using Gleevec in treating everyone suffering from leukemia, doctors are examining people having a particular genetic mix, and using the drug for individuals who have this condition.
An identical approach is in practice to decide which medicines people take in case of lung, breast, melanoma, as well as colorectal cancers. You might be well aware of the fact that conventional drugs aren’t possible the safest bet to fight against cancer. Similarly, precision medicine is not a permanent solution. Cancers tend to develop as time goes by and can resist any treatment you might avail.
Researchers, nowadays, are taking recourse to ‘basket trials.’ What’s a basket? The genetics of a health condition and not its location inside the human body defines the basket. For instance, people suffering from different types of cancer are grouped during basket trial research. The treatment that’s applied to them is entirely dependent on their tumor’s genetics. Researchers are pretty hopeful that the results which are derived will plainly display the success of this new revolution called precision medicine.
Genetics certainly plays a substantial role in precision medicine, but it is not everything that doctors need to focus on. Other useful methods can come up in the future to determine how personalization of healthcare happens. Such methods might comprise – a diet that suits you and only you, blood samples that help in keeping a tab on your immune cells, tests that keep track of the bacteria present in your digestive system, tracking of your heartbeat, blood pressure, or your blood sugar levels. In a nutshell, anything that enables a doctor to understand you better can help them find out ways to keep you in the pink of health.
Precision medicine is a revolutionary approach that aims to find out the root cause of any ailment. This is unlike focusing on the symptoms only. The complexities of illnesses are found. Precision medicine is going to be more accepted in the days to come.