DPD Deficiency Awarness and Testing
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DPD Deficiency or Dihydropyrimide dehydrogenase deficiency is a metobolic disorder where the enzyme needed to break down the commonly used chemotherapy drug Fluorouracil (5-FU) is absent. In a regular cancer patient this is drug is administered as a part of thier chemo treatment and the body immediately metabolizes 80 percent of it leaving 20 percent to help kill the bad cancer cells while also killing healthy cells. In a DPD Deficient patient 100 percent of the drug begins to attack all cells causing 5-FU toxicity which causes extremely uncomfortable very serious side effects including death. While this deficiency is rare an average of 1300 people die annually. A simple blood test is available for DPD Deficiency but is not part of the routine testing for a newly diagnosed cancer patient. This needs to change! In most cases by the time the oncology team figures out someone is suffering with 5-FU toxicity it is past the 96 hour window in which treatment is necessary in order for it to be successful. There is no reason any person or family should have to suffer through the debilitating side effects of a medication meant to help save thier lives when a test is available to prevent it. Please help! A simple blood test could save a life. This needs to be part of the routine blood work before this drug is administered.
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