Medical

Licking cancer: USA postal stamp helped fund key breast study

Licking cancer: USA postal stamp helped fund key breast study

This is a shocking departure from the conventional standard of care and will likely change how many oncologists treat patients diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer.

However, chemotherapy did offer some benefit to women aged 50 and younger who had a cancer recurrence score of 16-25, the researchers found.

Physicians and healthcare researchers are optimistic that this new testing will save numerous patients from unnecessary chemotherapy treatments and its side effects. At five years, the overall survival rate was 98.0 percent for those who received hormone therapy alone and 98.1 percent for those who received both therapies, and at nine years the respective overall survival rates were 93.9 percent and 93.8 percent. Moore said the "OncoType DX" test has always been used to spare many women with "low risk" scores from chemotherapy treatments.

Rachel Rawson, from the charity Breast Cancer Care, said: "Every day, women with certain types of breast cancer face the awful dilemma of whether or not to have the treatment, without hard facts about the benefit for them".

"Until now, we've been able to recommend treatment for women with these cancers at high and low risk of recurrence, but women at intermediate risk have been uncertain about the appropriate strategy to take", said Jeffrey Abrams, M.D., associate director of NCI's Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program.

One of the toughest decisions a woman with breast cancer will face is whether or not to undergo chemotherapy.




Most women in this scenario do not require therapy prior surgery and hormone treatment, " he explained. Most women in this situation don't need treatment beyond surgery and hormone therapy, he said. "We had no way of determining who needed it before and now it's a lot more clear", said Dr. Burak. Women deemed at intermediate risk may be considered for it, but on a patient-to-patient basis.

There is one caveat to the new findings.

"And it's really preventing women from taking these medications that are created to prevent them getting a recurrence of their breast cancer".

New research is changing the way we look at cancer treatments, specifically breast cancer.

The study was funded by the National Cancer Institute, some foundations and proceeds from the USA breast cancer postage stamp. Since 1998, when the charity stamp was authorized by Congress and first issued by the United States Postal Service, more than $86 million has been raised for breast cancer research.


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