CHEMO:: When earlier treatment isn’t better

It’s generally accepted that the earlier chemotherapy is given, the better the outcome for the cancer patient. It’s become common practice to give women chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment before surgery – known as neoadjuvant – to shrink tumour size.
But a meta-analysis – which is research that reviews other studies – has found that the procedure doesn’t prolong life or stop the spread of the cancer. In fact cancer patients who had neoadjuvant treatment had a 22 per cent greater risk of developing local tumours compared with those who had received chemotherapy and radiotherapy only after surgery (adjuvant).
Researchers at the Ioannina School of Medicine in Greece looked at the results of nine studies that involved around 4,000 breast cancer patients who had received chemotherapy either before or after surgery.
The conclusion, if taken seriously, could change cancer treatment – but it probably won’t.

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Written by What Doctors Don't Tell You

Explore Wellness in 2021