Clues for Personalizing Breast Cancer Treatment

April 29, 2010

The New York Times

A new study of women with the earliest form of breast cancer offers clues into which patients may need aggressive therapy and who can be spared unnecessary treatment.

Researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, tracked nearly 1,200 women who were diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in situ, or D.C.I.S., which is often referred to as precancer because the risky cells haven’t moved outside the milk duct. With increased use of mammography, the diagnosis of D.C.I.S. is on the rise, yet most of these women are at low risk of ever developing an invasive cancer. Because doctors have no way to identify which lesions pose the greatest threat, most women treat the problem aggressively, undergoing a combination of lumpectomy and radiation or opting for mastectomy... read more