The Morning Blend


Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Dr. Deepa Halaharvi, DO, FACOS

Posted at 7:00 AM, Oct 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-21 07:00:35-04

New research expands the number of women with a common type of early stage breast cancer who can skip chemotherapy and safely be treated with hormone-blocking therapies alone – even if their cancer has spread to some of their lymph nodes. However, women whose tumors have spread to their lymph nodes are often at higher risk of worse outcomes, with the majority receiving chemotherapy.

Results from the RxPONDER study, one of the largest clinical trials in hormone receptor-positive, HER2 negative early breast cancer, were presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in late 2020.

Based on these new findings, postmenopausal women whose cancer has spread to between one and three lymph nodes can avoid the side effects associated with chemotherapy if their Oncotype DX Breast Recurrence Score® result, a genomic test which predicts chemotherapy benefit and risk of cancer recurrence, is between 0 and 25.

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer worldwide, surpassing lung cancer for the first time in 2020. With the growing recognition of the importance of personalized treatment for breast cancer, genomic testing can help tailor treatment decisions to a patient’s individual tumor. Facing a breast cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming but getting a genomic test to understand the unique biology of a patient’s tumor can help guide personalized treatment decisions.