(NDJ) – A disheartening study reports that women who undergo complete breast amputation with the hopes to increase their cancer survival rate are being misled.
NDJ World | Published: Jan 28 2013 Health
Patients who only have the cancer itself removed and commit to a follow up treatment consisting of heavy radiation, aka radiotherapy, have a survival rate that’s five times greater than for women who undergo full breast amputations.
The study was conducted large scale by Duke University in North Carolina.
112,154 women, each one diagnosed with breast cancer between 1994 and 2004, were part of the study. 55 percent of the participants underwent tumor removal only while 44 percent of the breast cancer victims had their breasts removed entirely.
Women who underwent the first option had a life expectancy that was 13 percent higher than women in the second group. That number increased to 19 percent with patients over 50 years old.
Dr. E Shelley Hwang noted the findings in the magazine ‘Cancer’.
“Our research finds that less invasive treatment increase the life expectancy with women whose breast cancer is in Stage I or Stage II.”
Sally Greenbrook of the Breakthrough Breast Cancer Organizations says these results are very positive. “We kind of knew that already, but we are happy this study confirms this,” said Greenbrook.
“This study gives women a better opportunity to make their decision on the type of treatment they would want to have,” according to Greenbrook.
Radio therapy is a form of radiation that begins right after the tumor has been removed. A session lasts from five to six weeks but must be interrupted because of nasty side-effects caused by the radiation, such as heart problems, damaged immune system, extreme fatigue or pain in the chest area.
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