Breast Cancer: March 2007 Archives

Hi-tech breast cancer weapon

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breast cancerCUTTING-edge technology to improve breast cancer detection rates by 30 per cent will be rolled out across the state under a package announced yesterday.

The $26 million hi-tech breast screening process will boost cancer discovery rates by introducing digital intelligence to replace standard X-ray films.

The 21st-century system is particularly useful for picking up breast cancers in younger women, whose breast tissue is usually too dense to be filmed accurately by the old machines.

Breast cancer expert Dr Wendy Vincent said the new equipment would provide instant images for both patient and doctor and would be invaluable in regional NSW.

Radiation for breast cancer ups heart disease risk

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breast cancerAs a treatment for breast cancer, radiation, even modern regimens, appears to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, according to a report in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute for March 7.

Earlier reports have indicated that radiotherapy regimens used in the 1970s elevate heart disease risk, but it has been less clear if more recent regimens also increase the risk.

Apart from the "clear benefits" of radiotherapy, doctors should still be aware of the potentially increased risk of cardiovascular disease following specific radiotherapy regimens in long-term breast cancer survivors, Dr. Flora E. van Leeuwen, from the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam, and colleagues note in the report.

breast cancerBreast cancer treatment trials supported by the pharmaceutical industry are more likely to report positive results than non-sponsored studies, according to a study to be published in the April 1, 2007 issue of CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society. In addition, there are significant differences in the design of trials and types of questions addressed by pharmaceutical industry sponsored trials compared to non-sponsored trials. The study is the first to examine the impact of the pharmaceutical industry on breast cancer research.

Research and development (R&D) is critical to developing new therapies. The drug industry is a significant contributor to this effort, now with far greater spending than the United States' National Institutes of Health. As collaboration between the for-profit drug industry and academic medical centers has increased, so too have concerns over the potential impact of for-profit sponsorship on the nature and quality of the research and the potential for conflicts of interest. Several studies in other areas of medicine have suggested that pharmaceutical sponsorship leads to a greater chance that a clinical trial will yield positive results. The importance of this association for patients and researchers and the prevalence of this finding in cancer research are not yet clear.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Breast Cancer category from March 2007.

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