Survival better with lumpectomy

Women who undergo a lumpectomy plus radiation to treat early-stage breast cancer might have a better chance of survival than those who get a mastectomy, a new study suggests.

The study, which appeared recently on the website of the journal Cancer, suggests that the less invasive surgery, in which just the tissue in question is removed, is just as good an option or potentially a better one for women with Stage 1 or Stage 2 breast cancer than a mastectomy, according to a news release from Duke Medicine, which is affiliated with Duke University.

The team of researchers analyzed data from 112,154 women in a California registry who were diagnosed with Stage 1 or Stage 2 breast cancer between 1990 and 2004. Of those, 61,771 received a lumpectomy and radiation, and 50,383 had a mastectomy and no radiation.

The women’s health was tracked for more than nine years. Those who underwent lumpectomies and radiation fared better. The study, however, can’t conclusively link the surgery type and outcomes. It also noted that a longer follow-up period with the women is needed.

— Heidi Hagemeier, The Bulletin

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