Stomach cancer patients administered with the drug Trastuzumab alongside regular doses of chemotherapy can have their lifespan extended by as much as three months, a new study has suggested.

The study was conducted on 584 patients at 122 centers in 24 countries with the participants diagnozed with advanced gastric cancer. The results of the study were published in the latest issue of the medical journal The Lancet.

It was found that adding Trastuzumab to standard doses of cisplatin or fluoropyrimidine chemotherapy resulted in a median survival of 13.8 months as against 11.1 months for patients who were getting only chemotherapy.

the third phase of these clinical trials suggest that using the drug with chemotherapy must become a new standard treatment option for patients suffering from this type of stomach cancer, says Yung-JueBang, the lead author and group lead from the Seoul National University College of Medicine in South Korea.

However, the magazine itself questions this study on the grounds that this new treatment could prove cost prohibitive. Experts in the UK have questioned the treatment with Alastair J Munro and Paddy G. Niblock of the department of surgery and molecular oncology at the Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, University of Dundee claiming that cost per year of life gained will be too high.

They go on to suggest that the yearly health expenditure per citizen was way too low in the countries that contributed to this research. So, what would justify introducing a treatment that might enable an individual to live a few months longer by claiming from other persons' health expenditure?