Trial changes pa­tients’ lives

Sunday Tasmanian - - News -

MELISSA Irv­ing was aged just 39 when she found a lump in her left breast and was due to have a mas­tec­tomy.

In­stead, the mother of two from the NSW Cen­tral Coast was of­fered a chance to take part in the ELIM­I­NATE clin­i­cal trial.

In­stead of a mas­tec­tomy, her surgery was de­layed and she was given 16 rounds of chemo­ther­apy, the aro­matase in­hibitor letro­zole and oe­stro­gen sup­pres­sor gosere­lin. The treat­ment shrank her are pi­o­neer­ing, women could re­ceive less treat­ment and still beat their can­cer. Women with some small, slow-grow­ing can­cers will go with­out the stan­dard ra­dio­ther­apy treat­ment af­ter surgery to see if it af­fects their can­cer out­come.

An­other trial will ex­am­ine tu­mour so much she was able to pre­serve her breast and have a lumpec­tomy to beat the can­cer.

The mother of two girls said she found it ex­cit­ing to be part of a trial that might change the fu­ture of breast can­cer treat­ment.

“The fact I’ve got two girls, I wanted to be part of some­thing for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions, to be proac­tive about chang­ing peo­ple’s lives,” she said. whether it is nec­es­sary to re­move all the lymph nodes when only a small amount of can­cer has spread.

“Most can­cer tri­als are about adding ex­tra treat­ments, but there is other re­search that is hard to do and it is about ask­ing ‘is it OK to give less treat­ment? – maybe not everyone needs it’,” says Prof Ni­cholas Wil­cken, the chair of Breast Can­cer Tri­als.

Cur­rently all women who have a lumpec­tomy to treat breast can­cer are rou­tinely given five weeks of ra­dio­ther­apy.

The tri­als un­der­pin­ning this treat­ment pro­to­col were

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.