Friday, March 25, 2011


The title of this post certainly looks like some type of cryptic puzzle.  Or maybe it's a word written in reverse?  Bamumilipl.  Hmmm...nope..still not right.  What could it be? about the word "Yervoy?"  Nope...still doesn't look familiar.

Chances are you've not heard of either word.  Unless of course you have Melanoma.  If that's the case, this might be the word you've been waiting for.

Yervoy, or it's scientific name of Ipilimumab, is a new drug approved by the FDA towards fighting Melanoma.  It's the first such drug approved in 13 this is big news for Melanoma patients.  In fact, this is great news...the kind I like to share in this blog.  It gives Stage 3 and Stage 4 patients hope for an extended life.  Feel free to check out this link to the Skin Cancer Institute website for all the details:

Now, I don't mean to be Donny Doubter here...because I truly am excited by this news.  But I also know this will be an expensive drug.  From what I've read, it could cost $30K...a DOSE!  That may seem like a typo (which I'm quite good at) but I can certainly believe it.  I'm not sure what meds my brother took, but I believe it was somewhere like $5K per pill.  Getting treatment is not a cheap route, and unfortunately could prevent many from getting the help they need.

I mention this because I still feel strongly that the best "cure" is prevention.  It is SO important to make people aware of the dangers of tanning beds and unprotected skin in the sun.  It is SO important to encourage yearly visits to the dermatologist.  Early detection can "cure" up to 97%  of detected skin cancer.  The other 3% is deadly...and expensive.

To those of you fighting the fight now, I hope the insurance companies can help as I'm so excited for this great news.  For all others, do what you can to stay away from the fight all together. 

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