New Research Could Help Breast Cancer Sufferers Avoid Chemotherapy
New Research Could Help Breast Cancer Sufferers Avoid Chemotherapy
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05 June, 2018, 19:41
Researchers say the study could affect about 60,000 women a year in the U.S.
Carrying out a commercially available 21-gene test on patients' breast tumors could allow more than two thirds of women with the most common type of early breast cancer to avoid chemotherapy, according to data from a landmark study published yesterday.
The same decade-long study had previously confirmed that patients at low risk, as determined by a genomic test of their tumors, can skip chemotherapy.
"When you get diagnosed with breast cancer, you're like, 'What?' You know, 'I work out". Based on their versions of these genes, the women were given scores assessing their recurrence risk from 0 to 100.
While the technique is still in its early days, scientists have welcomed its potential as a future treatment for cancers that have resisted all other forms of therapy.
The study is limited in some ways.
The life of a woman with terminal breast cancer has been saved by a pioneering new therapy, according to United States researchers.
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Peter Johnson, Professor of Medical Oncology at Southampton General Hospital, said: "This is another piece of evidence confirming that some cancers are recognisable by the body's immune system and that if this can be stimulated in the right way, even cancers that have spread to different parts of the body may be treatable".
You'd think if a patient diagnosed with breast cancer had the option of undergoing chemotherapy or safely going without it, the answer would be obvious. Those women were then randomized into two trials: one received hormone therapy with chemotherapy; the other received hormone therapy alone.
"You have to balance risk versus benefit and if you can spare people the negative side effects that chemo brings along with the cost, that's big" ABC News' Chief Medical Editor Dr. Jennifer Ashton said on "Good Morning America". Women with an RS of 10 or lower (1619, 17%) were in the ET arm and those with a RS of 26 or higher (1389, 14%) were in the CET arm.
Patients were randomly assigned to receive chemotherapy followed by hormonal therapy or hormone therapy alone.
Those who score 26 or higher on the scale do benefit and now receive chemotherapy.
A WOMAN has been completely cured of breast cancer after doctors tweaked her immune system, enabling it to destroy the tumours that had spread through her body. "I've been anxious for a long time about unnecessary treatment for cancer, and unnecessary side effects from chemotherapy". "After the treatment dissolved most of my tumours, I was able to go for a 40-mile hike", she added.
A group of metastatic breast cancer experts has urged policymakers to empower patients with greater choice and participation in their treatment and care, to improve the quality of life of patients, their carers and families. After that, a Phase 3 trial will need to broaden the volume of patients treated to verify any positive results, . But they tend to work best on cancers that are influenced by environmental factors and are driven by lots of mutated genes.
"This is a hugely exciting first in the treatment of advanced breast cancer". "We want to give the right amount", he said.
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Many don’t need chemo
That could affect up to 70,000 women a year in the US and thousands more around the world, the study said. It was uncertain whether the benefits of chemotherapy were enough to justify the risks and toxicity.