Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Prolonging first-line chemotherapy improves outcomes for patients with metastatic breast cancer, meta-analysis shows

Date:
October 18, 2010
Source:
European Society for Medical Oncology
Summary:
Contrary to what many oncologists believe, patients with metastatic breast cancer live longer on average if their chemotherapy is continued after their cancer is brought under control, a new meta-analysis shows.

Contrary to what many oncologists believe, patients with metastatic breast cancer live longer on average if their chemotherapy is continued after their cancer is brought under control, a new meta-analysis shows.

The new results, presented at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), address an important area of debate in cancer treatment.

"In metastatic breast cancer there is substantial controversy over how long chemotherapy should be continued, in the absence of significant toxicity, after the achievement of disease control," said Dr Alessandra Gennari from Galliera Hospital in Genova, Italy.

In practice, the number of chemotherapy cycles patients are given tends to be based on their response to treatment, how well their symptoms improve, and how much toxicity they experience from the treatment, she said. "Our study addressed the question of whether prolonging chemotherapy after disease response or stabilization is associated with a prolongation of survival and time to progression."

The researchers identified 11 randomized studies that had compared longer and shorter durations of chemotherapy in a total of 2269 patients with metastatic breast cancer.

Overall, longer chemotherapy duration was associated with a 34% reduction in the rate of disease progression, where progression is defined as a significant increase in the size of metastatic lesions and/or the appearance of new metastatic lesions.

The analysis also showed that longer chemotherapy durations were associated with a 9% reduction in the rate of death during the course of the studies.

The results justify a policy of prolonging chemotherapy until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity in metastatic breast cancer, Dr Gennari said. Moreover, these results raise several questions that could be addressed in future trials, the most important being the combination of chemotherapeutic agents and new targeted agents in prolonged treatments.

"The take-home message is that despite what many oncologists believe, prolongation of chemotherapy in metastatic breast cancer after the achievement of disease control affects the history of the disease and, in the presence of acceptable toxicity, may be considered routinely."

"This meta-analysis addresses an extremely important topic," commented Dr Monica Castiglione from University Hospital Geneva, Switzerland. "The duration of first-line chemotherapy in breast cancer is a matter of debate and most oncologists would consider stopping chemotherapy when the disease is controlled, and continuing with endocrine therapy in case of hormone-sensitive disease. For patients with negative hormone receptors this possibility is not available, making the question of duration of chemotherapy even more important."

It would be valuable to have additional data on how continuation of chemotherapy affects different subgroups of patients such as those whose tumors are hormone-receptor positive and negative, Dr Castiglione said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Society for Medical Oncology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Society for Medical Oncology. "Prolonging first-line chemotherapy improves outcomes for patients with metastatic breast cancer, meta-analysis shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101012101845.htm>.
European Society for Medical Oncology. (2010, October 18). Prolonging first-line chemotherapy improves outcomes for patients with metastatic breast cancer, meta-analysis shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101012101845.htm
European Society for Medical Oncology. "Prolonging first-line chemotherapy improves outcomes for patients with metastatic breast cancer, meta-analysis shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101012101845.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) You're more likely to gain weight while watching action flicks than you are watching other types of programming, says a new study published in JAMA. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) New research says if you condition yourself to eat healthy foods, eventually you'll crave them instead of junk food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins