Navigation Links
More Women Choosing 'Preventive' Double Mastectomy
Date:10/22/2007

There's no proof cancer will spread to the healthy second breast, researchers say

MONDAY, Oct. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Women diagnosed with breast cancer who have a mastectomy are increasingly choosing to have their other, healthy breast removed as a preventive measure.

The rate of the procedure, called a contralateral prophylactic mastectomy, more than doubled from 1998 to 2003, according to a new study.

The increase concerns study lead author Dr. Todd Tuttle, chief of surgical oncology and associate professor of surgery at the University of Minnesota Medical School. He believes many women may be making the choice for inappropriate reasons, and removing the other breast may be unnecessary.

"We don't know why women are choosing this," he said. "If they are choosing it because they think it will improve their breast cancer survival, I am very concerned. It won't improve their overall survival."

Research has failed to show a survival benefit with the second mastectomy, Tuttle said in his report, published online Oct. 22 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. The reason: The risk of cancer spread from the original breast to other body sites often exceeds the risk of getting cancer in the second breast, he said.

Tuttle and his colleagues evaluated 4,969 women who chose contralateral prophylactic mastectomy, looking at the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) database. From 1998 to 2003, the rate of preventive mastectomy for the second, healthy breast increased from 4.2 percent to 11 percent. Those most likely to choose the preventive operation were younger women and non-Hispanic whites.

Tuttle said there are times when a second mastectomy is appropriate. "I will tell patients to consider it strongly if they have a known genetic mutation -- BRCA1 or 2 [the so-called breast cancer genes] -- or a very strong family history, such as first-degree relatives who develop breast cancer before age 50," he said.

"Sometimes, we will recommend it in those who need mastectomy on one side and because of body symmetry issues, the other breast would be too big" once the cancerous breast is removed, he added.

Tuttle's advice is in line with advice from the Society of Surgical Oncology and the American Cancer Society. Many women overestimate their risk of getting cancer in the second breast, according to the Society of Surgical Oncology.

In March, a study led by researchers at Wake Forest University found that most women diagnosed with breast cancer who also chose to have their unaffected breast removed said they didn't regret their decision. And they said their quality of life equaled that of women who chose not to have a preventive mastectomy, according to the study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Dr. S. Eva Singletary, professor of surgical oncology at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, said the increase in requests for the preventive mastectomies found in the new study "rings true clinically" for her patient population.

Singletary credits the increase in second mastectomies to "an improvement in breast reconstruction techniques," among other factors. Women who opt for immediate reconstruction after a mastectomy may be more likely to choose contralateral mastectomy and get the second breast reconstructed at the same time, sometimes to achieve better symmetry, particularly if they are heavy, she said.

In another study, published last week in the American Journal of Epidemiology, researchers reported that increased exposure to sunlight, which boosts vitamin D levels, may reduce the risk of advanced breast cancer in light-skinned women.

The study compared 1,788 breast cancer patients in San Francisco with a control group of 2,129 women who did not have breast cancer. The study participants had a wide range of natural skin colors. Vitamin D may help slow breast cancer cell growth, the researchers speculated. But the results aren't an endorsement to sunbathe. Instead, they said, vitamin D from diet and supplements may someday be recommended to help reduce breast cancer risk.

More information

To learn more about contralteral prophylactic mastectomy, visit The Society of Surgical Oncology.



SOURCES: Todd Tuttle, M.D., chief of surgical oncology and associate professor of surgery, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis; S. Eva Singletary, M.D., professor of surgical oncology, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston; Oct. 22 2007, Journal of Clinical Oncology, online; The Society of Surgical Oncology, Arlington Heights, Ill.; American Cancer Society, Atlanta


'/>"/>
Copyright©2007 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Transdermal HRT not cardioprotective in postmenopausal women with CAD
2. Transdermal HRT not cardioprotective in postmenopausal women with Coronary Artery Disease
3. Starvation in pregnant women can cause heart disease to their children
4. Women suffer from sexual dysfunction too
5. Brisk Walking lowers memory loss in women
6. Young womens woes
7. Young womens woes
8. Women find difficulty in calling it Quits
9. FDA approves new device to treat womens bleeding disorder
10. Women recognise faces better
11. Women more susceptible to brain damage from ecstasy
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... June 25, 2017 , ... June is Men’s Health Month and the ... common cancer among men in the U.S. and the third most common cause of cancer ... that one man in seven will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. ...
(Date:6/24/2017)... ... June 24, 2017 , ... The weather is heating ... outdoors. Home and business owners should be aware that the summer months provide more ... fact, mechanical locks and keys can be negatively affected from direct exposure to the ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... By scoring 100% for fiscal management and accountability, the ... online charity evaluator, Charity Navigator, validating ANRF's work as a top charity in America. ... Charity Navigator and earns ANRF a spot on their “ 10 Charities Worth Watching ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... June 23, 2017 , ... Dr. Ran Y. ... has recently begun offering three new minimally invasive procedures to patients who want ... reducing downtime, Dr. Rubinstein is excited to bring microneedling, microneedling facials, and platelet ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... ... The Aesthetic Channel has recently highlighted Dr. Ben Talei’s unique approach to ... technique that he calls the AuraLyft Facelift. The AuraLyft does more than ... expect to look refreshed, rejuvenated, and revitalized. , Dr. Talei’s unique approach stems ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/9/2017)... and INDIANAPOLIS , June 9, ... living with diabetes. In a further effort to help ... affected by this condition, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) ... ) have come together for the second phase of ... Systems programme (BRIDGES 2), reaffirming their commitment to helping ...
(Date:6/7/2017)... GAITHERSBURG, Md. , June 7, 2017  Novavax, Inc., ... the second of two Phase 2 trials of its RSV ... women of child bearing age have been published in the ... this publication have been shared in prior scientific conferences). The ... trial in April 2014. Novavax is developing the RSV F ...
(Date:6/2/2017)... LAWRENCE, Mass. , June 2, 2017  NxStage ... advancing renal care, today announced new findings demonstrating positive ... NxStage ® System One™. The data will be ... 2017, in Madrid, Spain . ... Knowledge to Improve Home Dialysis Network in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: