Lutathera is a breakthrough, FDA-approved treatment for adults with certain types of neuroendocrine tumors, or NETs, in the pancreas or gastrointestinal tract. Moffitt Cancer Center provides this advanced treatment and many others in our Gastrointestinal Oncology Program. A high-volume cancer center, Moffitt is led by renowned specialists who have an unparalleled level of experience in treating patients with even the most uncommon and complex neuroendocrine tumors – experience that can make all the difference when it comes to achieving the best possible outcome and quality of life.
What are neuroendocrine tumors?
Neuroendocrine tumors are malignant (cancerous) growths that develop in the hormone-manufacturing cells of the body’s neuroendocrine system. These cells are found in organs throughout the body, including the lungs, intestines, stomach and pancreas. Neuroendocrine tumors are relatively uncommon, but have a high prevalence since patients with neuroendocrine tumors usually live long.
What is Lutathera, and how does it treat neuroendocrine tumors?
Lutathera is a form of targeted radiotherapy that is administered intravenously. This type of treatment uses high doses of radiation to destroy cancer cells while limiting harm to surrounding healthy tissues. Lutathera – the first drug of its kind to be approved for the treatment of neuroendocrine tumors –contains a radioactive substance that seeks out cancer-positive cells and attacks them. It is considered to be a major advancement for patients with neuroendocrine tumors that have not responded well to other treatments.
The Lutathera treatment process begins in Moffitt’s Infusion Center, where premedication and amino acids are given intravenously to help protect kidney health. The patient is then taken to our nuclear medicine department to receive Lutathera, a process that takes about one hour. Additional amino acids are administered following treatment for a few hours.
If you have been diagnosed with a neuroendocrine tumor and would like to find out if you are a candidate Lutathera treatment, contact Moffitt at 1-888-663-3488 or fill out a new patient registration form online. A referral is not required to visit Moffitt.