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Postmastectomy Radiation Therapy Is Being Underutilized

March 22, 2017

Radiation after Mastectomy for Breast Cancer is Being Underutilized

In a study published in Cancer, nearly 20% of women with breast cancer who would benefit from radiation after mastectomy, also known as post-mastectomy radiation treatment (PMRT), are not receiving the treatment.

In 2001, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) released clinical practice guidelines for PMRT.

The researchers surveyed the women and assessed the rates of explanation, recommendation, and utilization of PMRT based on the ASCO guidelines.  The study found that radiation delivered after a mastectomy has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer returning in the chest wall and improve survival in high-risk patients.

The researchers concluded that approximately one-fifth of women who could benefit from PMRT did not receive treatment. For free information about breast cancer, contact the Pennsylvania breast cancer.

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