Bevacizumab for Cancer Treatment
Bevacizumab (Avastin®) is a prescription drug approved for adults with cancer. What types of cancer can it treat? The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved this medication for the following cancers:
- Nonsquamous, non-small cell lung cancer
- Colorectal cancer
- Glioblastoma brain cancer
- Renal cell carcinoma (a type of kidney cancer).
Bevacizumab used to be licensed for the treatment of breast cancer as well. However, studies have not shown the drug to increase survival in people with breast cancer, and there is not sufficient benefit to outweigh the risks. Healthcare providers may still prescribe bevacizumab "off-label" to treat this condition.
This medication binds to and inhibits a certain type of protein that encourages the growth of new blood vessels. As a result, the cancer is essentially "starved" of its blood supply.
(To learn more about this cancer treatment, including whether it should be used by itself or with other chemotherapy treatments, click What Is Bevacizumab Used For?.)