New study predicts if breast cancer will return
Following surgery to remove a tumor from the breast, a prescription to buy Tamoxifen may be a powerful tool for preventing a recurrence of the cancer.
Following surgery to remove a tumor from the breast, a prescription to buy Tamoxifen may be a powerful tool for preventing a recurrence of the cancer. However, it can be difficult to determine which patients are at risk for having their cancer return, which can interfere with a doctor's ability to prescribe the medication.
In order to solve this problem, a team of researchers from Queensland University of Technology developed a new test to measure a patient's risk of their cancer growing, spreading or returning after surgery.
The new method is based off the growing knowledge that the progression of cancer is largely dependent on tumor cells' interaction with surrounding healthy tissue. They found a way to test this tissue using samples collected during standard biopsies. In these procedures, healthy tissue is collected but rarely tested.
"The ability to predict its progress is a huge step forward as it will ultimately enable doctors to select the most appropriate treatments for individual patients," said lead researcher Helen McCosker.
Determining the most appropriate treatment may involve the decision of whether to provide a prescription to buy Tamoxifen.