Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Five New Breast Cancer Controversies

At the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium last week, there are five new breast cancer discoveries controversies. I know a couple of people who was there and hope to hear more from them but this is what I have for opinions so far:

1. Claim: Chemobrain starts before starting chemotherapy.Results were presented to show that in a study women who had not gone through chemo were showing the symptoms - which can also be caused by worry and fatigue. Hello, if you are diagnosed with cancer, have surgery, and are facing chemotherapy perhaps you might be a tad bit worried and tired?

My take on this is that first of all this study was done by people who don't believe chemo brain is real. Symptoms of chemobrain could also be the same as those caused by worry and fatigue. But the difference with chemobrain is the symptoms do not go away once you stop stressing and get some rest. There is a difference.

2. Claim: Taking Tamoxifen for ten years is better than five years. First of all this isn't new. This is just a new study that they are showing results. My take is that more testing is needed as it goes against what has previously been shown.

3. Claim: Doubling the dose of fulvestrant is better. I have no opinion here as I do not know anything about this drug.

4. Claim: Twice as long is not better with Herceptin. My take is this is only confirming previous research.

5. Claim: Avastin isn't indicated for breast cancer. My take is this is not new. This has been resolved a while back.

Let me just say I am not a doctor or researcher, I am merely a patient. I admit I am not perfect so I could be wrong and these are my opinions.

So overall, We have one new claim that I, and many other women with chemobrain, disagree with completely. One claim I can't say anything about. And three claims is that I say are not new.

Hmmm.... I think I need some more proof to show that these are truly new and breakthroughs in some way. But I am not buying most of these.


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AnneMarie said...

Well, Caroline, You SUMMED up SABCS quite accurately from where I sit. I blogged about your top two items (as they are "the" hot topics among those of us who are really affected by them).

In fact, I blogged about both of them TWICE... Once from San Antonio and then yesterday and today after I had a chance to decipher the presentations.

It's the smaller and more obscure presentations that are noteworthy BUT, it's important to note that much of that is in the beginning stages. In other words, pleanty of what was presented are really building blocks.

As usual, great observations and I read the next post, too... Hope you have a better day today. I feel like I'm getting sick and THAT would really stink!


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