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Breast Cancer News

In this section, access cutting-edge breast cancer news on treatment updates, emerging therapies, study results and other medical and quality-of-life issues important to you.

Cancer gene mutation linked to earlier menopause

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Women carrying BRCA mutations tied to breast and ovarian cancer may hit menopause a few years earlier than other women, according to a new study.

Chemotherapy Before Surgery May Be Most Beneficial in Very Young Women

Research shows younger women given pre-surgical, or neoadjuvant, chemotherapy are more likely to have a complete response to that treatment than older women. 

T-DM1 Overall Survival Data Released, FDA Grants Priority Review

An article in the New England Journal of Medicine with updated overall survival results from the international EMILIA study of T-DM1 was published two days following an announcement of accelerated FDA review for the medicine.

Higher Dose of Fulvestrant May Increase Survival

Findings from the CONFIRM clinical trial presented at the 2012 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in December showed that increasing the dose of fulvestrant (Faslodex) from 250 mg to 500 mg for women with estrogen receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer increased median overall survival by 4.1 months. Overall survival is the time a person lives from the start of treatment until death from any cause.

Analysis Recommends Starting Treatment Within Two Months of Diagnosis

Women who waited more than 60 days after a late-stage breast cancer diagnosis were 85 percent more likely to die from the disease than women who began treatment sooner, a retrospective analysis of medical records showed. For this study, late-stage included any cancer that traveled to lymph nodes, regardless of cancer stage.

Heart Problems Present But Not Long-Term with Herceptin

A follow-up assessment of data from the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project B-31 (NSABP B-31) clinical trial showed that adding trastuzumab (Herceptin) to combination chemotherapy treatment raises the risk of heart problems, but they are not long-term. 

Chemotherapy Associated with Heart Problems

A study of 12,500 women treated for HER2 positive breast cancer showed an association between the use of an anthracycline, trastuzumab (Herceptin) or other chemotherapy and the development of heart failure or cardiomyopathy, disease of the heart muscle. Through analysis of existing medical records, the results support findings of past clinical trials.

UK cost agency backs drugs for breast cancer

LONDON (Reuters) - British women with a family history of breast cancer could be offered two drugs to try to prevent the disease under draft guidelines published by the country's healthcare cost watchdog.

Cancer studies often downplay chemo side effects

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Doctors relying on studies published in top journals for guidance about how to treat women with breast cancer may not be getting the most accurate information, according to a new analysis.

Medicare spends $1 billion on mammograms: study

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Screening women for breast cancer costs the U.S. Medicare program $1 billion every year - about as much as it spends on treatment, according to a new study.