Clinical trials have shown that women with early stages of breast cancer finished treatment with no increased toxicity when radiation was "sandwiched" with chemotherapy, according to MedPageToday.com
To date there is no optimal formula for sequencing chemo and radiation during breast cancer treatment. Indrajit Fernando of the University of Birmingham in Birmingham, England concludes that the new trials in this therapy have the potential to shorten treatment duration and improve convenience and quality of life for patients.
The study organized 2,296 patients with early invasive breast cancer. After major surgery, the patients were randomly put into groups that received sequential or synchronous therapy.
The essential statistics to draw from the study are related to cancer recurrence. After an average of 8.8 years of follow-up, the five-year relapse rates were 5.4 percent for women treated with synchronized therapy and 7.4 percent with sequential therapy. The statistics represent some interesting trends that show that synchronous treatment may better prevent the cancer from coming back.
Breast cancer is most common among women, accounting for 1 in 4 cancers diagnosed in U.S. women, according to the American Cancer Society.