Breast Cancer Recurrence Halved by Radiation

Rate of death by breast cancer also falls with radiotherapy

THURSDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- The use of radiotherapy appears to dramatically reduce the risk of breast cancer recurrence, and somewhat reduce the risk of death from breast cancer, in women who receive radiation after breast-conserving surgery, according to the results of a meta-analysis published online Oct. 20 in The Lancet.

Members of the Early Breast Cancer Trialists' Collaborative Group analyzed data on 10,801 women who participated in 17 randomized trials of radiotherapy versus no radiotherapy following breast-conserving surgical treatment of breast cancer; 8,337 of the women had node-negative or node-positive disease.

The researchers found that radiotherapy reduced the risk of recurrence at 10 years by nearly half, from 35 to 19.3 percent; the risk of death over 15 years was reduced from 25.2 to 21.4 percent. In women with node-negative disease, rates of recurrence and death varied according to age, tumor grade, estrogen-receptor status, use of tamoxifen, and extent of surgery -- characteristics that were highly predictive of degrees of risk reduction.

"After breast-conserving surgery, radiotherapy to the conserved breast halves the rate at which the disease recurs and reduces the breast cancer death rate by about a sixth. These proportional benefits vary little between different groups of women. By contrast, the absolute benefits from radiotherapy vary substantially according to the characteristics of the patient and they can be predicted at the time when treatment decisions need to be made," the authors write.

Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)
Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Copyright © 2011 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Powered by

jQuery UI Accordion - Default functionality

For life-long learning and continuing professional development, come to Lippincott's NursingCenter.

Nursing Jobs Plus
Featured Jobs
Recommended CE Articles

Debunking Three Rape Myths
Journal of Forensic Nursing, October/December 2014
Expires: 12/31/2016 CE:2.5 $24.95

Drug updates and approvals: 2014 in review
The Nurse Practitioner, 13December 2014
Expires: 12/31/2016 CE:3 $27.95

Can Food Processing Enhance Cancer Protection?
Nutrition Today, September/October 2014
Expires: 10/31/2016 CE:2 $21.95

More CE Articles

Subscribe to Recommended CE

Recommended Nursing Articles Evidence Based Practice Skin Care Network NursingCenter Quick Links What’s Trending Events