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[MOL] http://www.docguide.com/dgc.nsf/news/85256811005E02B585256889004ECE34?OpenDocument&id=F1749B8EDFC44D6B85256895006E774F&c=Breast%20Cancer&count=10

Cyctoxic therapy a must for young women

A DGReview of :"Factors influencing the effect of age on prognosis in breast cancer: population based study"

By Bruce Yates

Women under the age of 35 who have breast cancer, for this reason alone, should be considered high risk and offered adjuvant cytotoxic treatment following surgery.

This conclusion was reached by researchers from the Danish Epidemiology Science Centre and University of Copenhagen in a retrospective study based on a population based database of breast cancer patients. Data was included on characteristics of the tumour, what treatment they received and survival at 10 years.

Analysis was carried out among 10,356 women who were under the age of 50 when they were diagnosed with primary breast cancer. Comparisons were made between mortality of women under the age of 35 and middle-aged women.

The study found a significantly increased risk of death among young women diagnosed with what is considered low-risk disease but who did not receive adjuvant chemotherapy. However, there is no such trend among young women who do receive adjuvant cytotoxic therapy. This differential remains even if the women are only grouped according to the presence of node-negative disease or the same size tumour.

The study results cannot be taken as direct evidence that young women classified with low risk disease will benefit from adjuvant cytotoxic therapy, the researchers point out. But they feel confident their conclusions are correct, and other recent studies appear to back up what they think.

Warmly, lillian

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