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August 2019 (Vol. 4 Issue 6)

Less is more when it comes to breast cancer treatment, say researchers
About the author: 
Bryan Hubbard

Less is more when it comes to breast cancer treatment, say researchers image

Less could be more when it comes to breast cancer. Women who choose breast conserving therapy (BCT) are doing just as well—and may even be surviving longer—than others who opt for radical mastectomy, where the breast is removed.

BCT seems to be by far the best option for women with special types of breast cancer—known as T1-2N0-1M0 cancers—and whose cancers hadn’t spread and who didn’t have chemotherapy.

It also seems to improve the survival rates for older women, say researchers from the University of Twente and the Erasmus MC Cancer Institute in The Netherlands.

Earlier studies had all pointed to BCT being the better option, and improving survivability, but the researchers wanted to take a fresh look with newer data that also included more age groups and over longer periods of time.

In their new review, the researchers analysed the outcomes for nearly 130,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer between 1999 and 2005 and 2006 to 2012.

Mastectomy could still be a good choice for women for whom radiotherapy isn’t possible, the researchers add.


References

(Source: Proceedings from the European Cancer Congress, January 29, 2017)

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