Breast cancer markers commonly used for routine surveillance

October 24, 2014
Breast cancer markers commonly used for routine surveillance

(HealthDay)—Breast cancer tumor markers are frequently used for routine surveillance in nonmetastatic breast cancer, and their use has been found to increase the number of diagnostic procedures performed as well as the total cost of care, according to a study published online Oct. 20 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Scott D. Ramsey, M.D., Ph.D., from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, and colleagues utilized Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results-Medicare records to identify patients diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer (2001 and 2007). Billing codes were used to assess tumor marker usage within two years after diagnosis.

The researchers found that, of the 39,650 eligible patients, 16,653 (42 percent) received at least one tumor marker assessment. An average of 5.7 tests were performed over two years, with rates of use per person increasing over time. Age at diagnosis, diagnosis year, stage at diagnosis, race/ethnicity, geographic region, and urban/rural status were all significantly associated with marker use. Rates of advanced imaging were significantly higher in the assessment group, but biopsies were not. After adjusting for other factors, medical costs for patients who received at least one test were approximately 29 percent greater than costs for those who received none.

"A better understanding of factors driving the use of and the potential benefits and harms of surveillance-based tumor marker testing is needed," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

Explore further: Three DNA methylation markers ID recurrence in bladder cancer

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Related Stories

Three DNA methylation markers ID recurrence in bladder cancer

April 2, 2014
(HealthDay)—For patients with noninvasive urothelial carcinoma, three DNA methylation markers are able to accurately predict tumor recurrence, according to a study published in the April 1 issue of Clinical Cancer Research.

Adherence to cancer surveillance guidelines varies

March 30, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Insured breast cancer survivors have high rates of guideline-recommended recurrence testing and non-recommended metastatic testing, while only about half of colorectal cancer survivors undergo recommended surveillance ...

Cognition affected in subgroups of breast cancer patients

May 23, 2014
(HealthDay)—Overall, cancer does not seem to affect pretreatment cognition in older women with breast cancer, compared to healthy controls; however, cognition may be affected in some subgroups of breast cancer patients, ...

Difference in breast cancer survival between black and white women has not changed substantially

July 23, 2013
In an analysis of 5-year survival rates among black and white women diagnosed with breast cancer between 1991 and 2005, black women continued to have a lower rate of survival, with most of the difference related to factors ...

Circulating tumor cells provide genomic snapshot of breast cancer

October 8, 2014
The genetic fingerprint of a metastatic cancer is constantly changing, which means that the therapy that may have stopped a patient's cancer growth today, won't necessarily work tomorrow. Although doctors can continue to ...

Study measures breast cancer tumor response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy

October 23, 2014
A Dartmouth study suggests that it may be possible to use Diffuse Optical Spectroscopic Tomographic imaging (DOST) to predict which patients will best respond to chemotherapy used to shrink breast cancer tumors before surgery. ...

Recommended for you

Breath test breakthrough for early diagnosis of oesophageal and gastric cancer

May 18, 2018
A breath test can successfully detect oesophageal and gastric cancer and could be used as a first-line test for patients, say researchers.

MR spectroscopy imaging reveals effects of targeted treatment of mutant IDH1 gliomas

May 18, 2018
Using a novel imaging method, a Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) research team is investigating the mechanisms behind a potential targeted treatment for a subtype of the deadly brains tumors called gliomas. In their report ...

Particle shows promise to prevent the spread of triple-negative breast cancer

May 18, 2018
USC researchers have pinpointed a remedy to prevent the spread of triple-negative breast cancer. Metastatic breast cancer is a leading cause of death for women. The findings appear today in Nature Communications.

Dilemma for cancer patients as life-saving meds are tied to vision loss

May 18, 2018
(HealthDay)—A newer type of cancer treatment may offer the chance of longer survival, but the drugs could also trigger new side effects, such as vision problems.

Polygenic scores to classify cancer risk

May 18, 2018
Polygenic risk scores could be useful to stratify the risk of several cancers among patients in medical centers, allowing for the potential discovery of new associations between genes, disease and secondary effects, according ...

A way to prevent pancreatic cancer from spreading post-surgery?

May 17, 2018
Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) have solved a mystery about how pancreatic cancer spreads following surgery in patients whose tumor is successfully removed. After surgery, patients' typically experience ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.