Chemo may extend survival after breast cancer's return
(HealthDay)—In women with breast cancer that has recurred but remains confined to in or near the breast, post-surgical chemotherapy appears to boost survival, new research shows.
The study also found that patients with estrogen receptor (ER)-negative breast cancers— tumors that are not reliant on estrogen—were most responsive to this treatment.
It's well known that patients who experience a recurrence of local and/or regional (for example, nearby lymph nodes) breast cancer are at high risk for having their cancer spread to other areas of the body.
Some doctors administer chemotherapy to these patients after their recurrent breast tumors have been removed by surgery, but the efficacy of this treatment—called adjuvant chemotherapy—had not been studied until now.
"This is the first randomized controlled study that shows that adjuvant chemotherapy works in these patients," study author Dr. Stefan Aebi, head of the division of medical oncology at Luzerner Kantonsspital in Luzern, Switzerland, said in an American Association for Cancer Research news release.
The study was to be presented Thursday at the 2012 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.
The study included 162 patients with isolated local and regional breast cancer recurrence: 85 received adjuvant chemotherapy and 77 did not.
According to the authors, five-year rates of disease-free survival (meaning the cancer did not return) were 69 percent in patients who got adjuvant chemotherapy compared to 57 percent for those who did not.
The overall survival rate was 88 percent for those who received adjuvant chemotherapy and 76 percent for those who did not.
Women with ER-negative breast cancer had the best results, with a five-year disease-free survival rate of 67 percent for those who received adjuvant chemotherapy and 35 percent for those who did not. Overall survival rates were 79 percent for those who received adjuvant chemotherapy and 69 percent for those who did not.
Among patients with ER-positive breast cancer (tumors that respond to estrogen), five-year, disease-free survival was 70 percent for those who received adjuvant chemotherapy and 69 percent for those who did not, the researchers said. Overall survival was 94 percent for those who received chemotherapy versus 80 percent among those who did not.
Although the study showed an association between adjuvant chemotherapy and improved survival, it did not prove a cause-and-effect link.
Two breast cancer experts were heartened by the results.
"There has been no clear way to manage locally recurrent breast cancer after excision—most often, chemotherapy has been offered, but some patients have been hesitant about undergoing such aggressive therapy without known clear benefits," explained Dr. Stephanie Bernik, chief of surgical oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.
Bernik said that, "It is exciting that we now have a randomized study that quantifies the benefit of chemotherapy for those with recurrent disease so that the patient can make an informed decision as to whether or not to go forward with the treatment. Clinicians now have a study to support what we have long held to be [that] chemotherapy can help improve survival even in woman with recurrent disease."
Dr. Kerin Adelson, an assistant professor of medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, also in New York City, agreed.
"Local recurrences of breast cancer in breast tissue often near the site of the original cancer or in the axillary lymph nodes are curable, unlike cancer which returns in a distant organ," Adelson explained. "This [new] data is absolutely consistent with what we know about the benefit of systemic chemotherapy after a primary cancer. Going forward, oncologists should not hesitate to treat local recurrences as aggressively as they would a primary cancer."
More information: The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more about breast cancer treatment.
Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
- Less invasive surgery detects residual breast cancer in lymph nodes after chemotherapy Dec 05, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Oral bisphosphonate did not improve prognosis for patients with breast cancer Dec 07, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Docetaxel given after doxorubicin reduces recurrence Jan 08, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Chemotherapy is as effective before breast cancer surgery as after Sep 08, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Chemotherapy-induced anemia increases risk of local breast cancer recurrence Apr 01, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Why is zone 1 in liver more prone to ischemic injury?
May 23, 2013 Hi, Is it because around central vein, there is only deoxygenated blood from the vein where as in the periphery there is hepatic artery. Also why...
How can there be villous adenoma in colon, if there are no villi there
May 22, 2013 As title suggest. Thanks :smile:
How can there be a term called "intestinal metaplasia" of stomach
May 21, 2013 Hello everyone, Ok Stomach's normal epithelium is simple columnar, now in intestinal type of adenocarcinoma of stomach it undergoes "intestinal...
Pressure-volume curve: Elastic Recoil Pressure don't make sense
May 18, 2013 From pressure-volume curve of the lung and chest wall (attached photo), I don't understand why would the elastic recoil pressure of the lung is...
If you became brain-dead, would you want them to pull the plug?
May 17, 2013 I'd want the rest of me to stay alive. Sure it's a lousy way to live but it beats being all-the-way dead. Maybe if I make it 20 years they'll...
MRI bill question
May 15, 2013 Dear PFers, The hospital gave us a $12k bill for one MRI (head with contrast). The people I talked to at the hospital tell me that they do not...
- More from Physics Forums - Medical Sciences
More news stories
In recent years, microRNAs (miRNAs) and other non-coding RNAs are small molecules that help control the expression of specific proteins. In recent years they have emerged as disease biomarkers. miRNA profiles have been used ...
Cancer 1 hour ago | not rated yet | 0
Cancer cells spread and grow by avoiding detection and destruction by the immune system. Stimulation of the immune system can help to eliminate cancer cells; however, there are many factors that cause the immune system to ...
Cancer 1 hour ago | not rated yet | 0
Researchers from London's Kingston University have begun a two-year study which could help prolong the lives of people with colorectal tumours.
Cancer 4 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
Transformative research from Western University has identified new hormones in the body which may suppress breast cancer and stimulate the regression of breast tumors.
Cancer 5 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
(Medical Xpress)—Curtin University researchers have found evidence that targeting specific cells in the body can reverse the effects of cancer on the immune system.
Cancer 5 hours ago | 5 / 5 (3) | 0
(HealthDay)—We've all seen them: the surfers who race to the beach when a hurricane hits, the guy who decides to ride out the storm in his overmatched boat, the tornado chasers who fearlessly steer their ...
56 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—New evidence-based guidelines provide guidance on medical and surgical methods for second-trimester abortion and management of associated complications, according to a practice bulletin published ...
36 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—More than one in four of those eligible for new premium assistance tax credits under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) do not have a checking account and will not be able to receive premiums from ...
25 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—Comorbid conditions often accompany alopecia areata, according to a study published online May 22 in JAMA Dermatology.
6 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—As a world-class golfer, Stacy Lewis' accomplishments are remarkable. But it was a physical challenge in her childhood that defined her ascent to the top of her sport.
46 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
Women at a particular stage in their monthly menstrual cycle may be more vulnerable to some of the psychological side-effects associated with stressful experiences, according to a study from UCL.
1 hour ago | not rated yet | 0 |