New Study Suggests Chemotherapy not Needed to Treat Breast Cancer

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The two most recent studies it is funding look at tomosynthesis - a newer breast imaging technique - versus standard-of-care 3D mammograms, and research on whether weight loss impacts breast cancer treatment and outcomes.

The breast cancer study cast doubt on chemo's necessity in treating women in early stages of the disease where it has not spread to lymph nodes, it is hormone-positive and it is not the type that the drug Herceptin targets.

Baroness Delyth Morgan, chief executive of Breast Cancer Now, said the "landmark study" was "fantastic news".

It's the largest study ever done about breast cancer treatment, and its main finding is that at least 70% of early-stage breast cancer patients may be spared chemotherapy; welcome news to those who've experienced it.

Rosenberg says investigators have already tested the approach in liver and colorectal cancer, but the "big picture" is that it is not cancer type-specific. The money was used to pay for the gene test, which costs more than $4,000 per person. Those who score high - 26 to 100 - receive both hormone therapy and chemotherapy.

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.

In doing so - they'll avoid the side-effects that come along with it.

The study gives clinicians "high-quality data to inform personalized treatment recommendations for women", said Dr. Joseph Sparano, lead author of the study.

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Diagnosed with breast cancer in April 2017, hospice nurse Tonda Bettner says nothing can prepare you for chemotherapy.

"If it weren't for patients like (ours) throughout the country, we wouldn't know these answers", Yost explained. It's called the Oncotype DX test. "Therefore they should get the chemotherapy along with hormonal treatment".

In 2018, an estimated 266,120 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the US, along with 63,960 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer.

What will she tell women who under prior guidelines received chemo and all its side effects and didn't need it after all?

However, chemotherapy did offer some benefit to women aged 50 and younger who had a cancer recurrence score of 16-25, researchers found. "It was all gone", she said. Most patients with the disease have a high survival rate, but their prognoses worsen drastically if their cancer returns in other parts of the body. But the TAILORx study, conducted on more than 6,500 women, concluded that the level justifying this combination could be safely elevated.

Over the years, the Cancer Institute has used its $59.8 million in proceeds for studies trying to improve early detection and to determine which cancers are most risky and need heaviest treatment and which are less so. Breast cancer remains the second most common cause of death from cancer among females in Australia.

The study found that women over 50 scoring up to 25 did not need chemo, nor did women under 50 with a score up to 15.

"Oncologists have been getting much smarter about dialing back treatment so that it doesn't do more harm than good", Steven Katz, a University of MI researcher who examines medical decision-making, told the Washington Post.