Extra Radiation Helps Keep Breast Cancer Away
Reported November 16, 2007
(Ivanhoe Newswire) — Women with early-stage breast cancer are seeing the benefits of receiving an additional high dose of radiation (boost dose) after undergoing standard treatment.
New research reveals women 40 years old and younger who received a boost dose of radiation were twice as likely to be cancer free 10 years after treatment than women who did not receive the extra dose. Although younger women showed the most benefit, women of all ages who received the boost dose were better off 10 years down the road than women who did not.
This study involved 5,318 women who underwent standard breast cancer treatment. Standard treatment for patients with early-stage breast cancer normally involves a lumpectomy, during which the surgeon removes a tumor and surrounding healthy tissue, and six to eight weeks of radiation therapy to kill any remaining cancer cells. During the study, the boost dose of radiation was administered after the conventional radiation therapy.
The study also found that younger patients suffering from early-stage breast cancer were more likely to experience a recurrence than older patients. Researchers say they believe this is because women who are diagnosed with breast cancer younger typically suffer from a more aggressive form.
SOURCE: American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncologys 49th Annual Meeting, Oct. 29, 2007 in Los Angeles, Calif.