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Breast Cancer? ER Positive or Negative

st cancer. Because older women are under-represented in clinical trials, their optimal treatment has not been well established.

The researchers point to the importance of further reducing mortality rates among women over 70 and women with ER-negative tumors. The authors argue that recruiting more older women into clinical trials could lead to better treatments and outcomes for this age group. In addition, while a number of breast cancer drugs have recently been introduced that are likely to benefit women with ER-negative tumors, any impact they would have on mortality was not seen during this study period. For example, adjuvant use of Herceptin (trastuzumab) was approved in November 2006 for HER-2+ breast cancer (many ER-negative breast cancers are HER2+).

Investigators at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the National Naval Medical Center looked at 234,828 cases of invasive female breast cancer diagnosed between 1990 and 2003. The study analyzed data from the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) cancer registry, an NCI-sponsored, population-based database that compiles detailed cancer statistics.

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