Currently Viewing:
Newsroom
Currently Reading
Radiotherapy Reduces Risk of Breast Cancer Mortality, Increases Risks of Other Cancers
June 29, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
Fish Consumption May be Linked to Lower Disease Activity in RA Patients
June 28, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
Nivolumab Improved Patient-Reported QOL Compared With Investigator's Choice: CheckMate 141
June 28, 2017 – Surabhi Dangi-Garimella, PhD
Research Finds Diabetes Drugs, Diet, and Alcohol Affect Breast Cancer Prevention
June 27, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
Infusing a Sense of Urgency in Cancer Care: The Biden Cancer Initiative
June 27, 2017 – Surabhi Dangi-Garimella, PhD
FDA Plan to Boost Drug Competition Includes Expedited Generic Approval Pathway
June 27, 2017 – Christina Mattina
Study Investigates Treatment Trends in COPD and Asthma–COPD Overlap Patients
June 27, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
Venclexta/Venclyxto Effective in Treating Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
June 27, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
What We're Reading: FDA Approvals; Capping Malpractice Awards; Illegal Immigrants Avoid Care
June 27, 2017 – AJMC Staff

Radiotherapy Reduces Risk of Breast Cancer Mortality, Increases Risks of Other Cancers

Alison Rodriguez
Radiotherapy is responsible for a significant reduction in breast cancer mortality. However, the treatment may lead to the development of a different cancer or heart disease in the future.
Radiotherapy is responsible for a significant reduction in breast cancer mortality; however, the treatment may lead to the development of a different cancer or heart disease in the future.

A new study, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, estimates the risks of radiotherapy for breast cancer through a systematic literature review that includes lung and heart doses in regimens for breast cancer during 2010 to 2015. 

The authors conducted a meta-analysis of data from previous randomized trials that compare radiotherapy versus no radiotherapy. The analysis included data on 40,781 women who had participated in 75 clinical trials, and rate ratios for secondary cancer, lung cancer, and cardiac mortality were collected. Patient information, like tumor characteristics, treatments, and cancer recurrence, were considered in the trials.

Following the meta-analysis, the researchers were able to calculate the risks for other cancers among certain population categories with radiotherapy utilization. The risk for lung cancer is approximately 4% for long-term and continuing smokers, and 0.3% for nonsmokers. For cardiac mortality, the absolute risk is estimated at approximately 1% for smokers and 0.3% for nonsmokers.

The study did not discover any information on the association between radiotherapy and heart disease development, and therefore could not draw a conclusion. The researchers also note their limitations in the study, as they did not know all the causes of death or smoking habits among the trial participants. However, the research still demonstrates the influence of radiotherapy on smokers and their risks of future diseases.

 “For long-term smokers irradiated today, the estimated combined risks from radiotherapy are a few percentage points if smoking continues, which may outweigh the reduction in breast cancer mortality; however, smoking cessation substantially reduces risk,” concludes the study. “For healthy nonsmokers, the estimated absolute risks of lung cancer or cardiac mortality from radiotherapy add up to < 1%, which, for most women, is much smaller than the benefit from radiotherapy.”

Reference

Taylor C, Correa C, Duane FK, et al. Estimating the risks of breast cancer radiotherapy: evidence from modern radiation doses to the lungs and heart and from previous randomized trials. J Clin Oncol. 2017;35(15):1641-1649. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2016.72.0722.

 
Copyright AJMC 2006-2020 Clinical Care Targeted Communications Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
x
Welcome the the new and improved AJMC.com, the premier managed market network. Tell us about yourself so that we can serve you better.
Sign Up