Published: Wed, June 06, 2018
Medicine | By Daryl Nelson

Some Breast Cancer Patients Can Skip Chemo Thanks To New Genetic Insight

Some Breast Cancer Patients Can Skip Chemo Thanks To New Genetic Insight

Across the European Union, we have seen positive results for breast cancer care as more women are being diagnosed and treated earlier, leading to higher survival rates.

"It feels miraculous and I am beyond amazed that I have now been free of cancer for two years", she told the media.

The technique has previously been used to treat blood cancers and melanoma, but "it is the first time the treatment has been successful for late-stage breast cancer".

All of the women in the study, called the Trial Assigning Individualized Options for Treatment (Rx), or TAILORx, had their breast tumors analyzed with a molecular test. They used gene testing of the tumor to determine risks and treatment.

About 17 percent of the women tested had high-risk scores and were advised to have chemotherapy.

"I'd make sure women are educated about the new results especially when they talk to their Oncologist about what additional treatment beyond surgery is needed" said Abraham. This left a lot of women, an estimated 65,000 in the USA each year, in a gray zone, unsure if they would benefit from chemo. The trial also wanted to confirm that a low RS of 0 to 10 is associated with a low rate of distant recurrence when patients receive endocrine therapy alone.

The nine-year-survival-rate was 93.9 percent without chemotherapy and 93.8 percent with chemotherapy.

Around two thirds of women diagnosed with breast cancer survive the disease, according to Cancer Research UK.

This researchers split the middle-scoring group into two randomized subgroups: one treated exclusively with estrogen-blocking hormone therapy, and one with chemo combined with hormone therapy.

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While the new study fills in a crucial gap of medical knowledge, what remains confusing is what took so long to get the point where we can measure twice and cut once, so to speak.

"She knew from that that the benefit of chemotherapy was very low, so she chose to not do chemotherapy, just do the hormone pill, and then also had just a short course of radiation, only three weeks instead of the standard six to seven", said Melissa Mitchell, a radiation oncologist with the University of Kansas Cancer Center.

"The more in the bad risk category we'd say the chances of the cancer coming back are high so we'd give aggressive chemotherapy but still it wasn't an accurate science", explained Dr. Imran.

A woman with an aggressive form of breast cancer which defied chemotherapy and spread to other organs, was cured with an experimental treatment that triggered her immune system, researchers said Monday.

"Chemotherapy has saved a tremendous amount of lives, and will continue to do so", Baselga says.

Chemotherapy may be avoided in about 70% of early-stage breast cancer patients, thus limiting chemotherapy to the 30% for whom it can be predicted to be beneficial, a study released on Sunday (3 June) shows.

More than 10,000 women with the most common form of early breast cancer took part in a trial that found the treatment was not necessary for many after they had surgery. A little boost can outweigh the risks of the treatment for these patients. "I had a tumour in my chest that I could feel shrinking", she said.

"We have been using Oncotype DX for some years now among women in tumours that are less than 4 cm with no axillary lymph nodes, estrogen progesterone receptor positive and HER 2 new negative".

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the United States, behind only skin cancer.

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