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News USA

Although the pink ribbon is a recognizable symbol for breast cancer, the fact is that many women still do not appreciate the extent to which they’re at risk for breast cancer. (Photo: www.free-hdwallpapers.com)
Aug 28, 2013 | News USA

Study: Too many U.S. women still unaware of real breast cancer risk

by Tribune America

SEATTLE, Wash., USA: Virtually all American women are aware that the pink ribbon is the symbol of breast cancer awareness. Despite this near-universal recognition, it is still a sad fact that plenty of women do not truly appreciate the extent to which they are at risk for breast cancer. Fresh evidence comes from a recent study by the Mayo Center Clinic for the Science of Health Care Delivery.

Researchers found that breast cancer patients in rural areas of the United States are less likely than those in cities to receive recommended radiation therapy after having a lumpectomy, a breast-sparing surgery that removes only tumors and surrounding tissue.

This is worrisome because lack of follow-up radiation therapy could lead to recurrence and further surgery.

The study also found that rural women were less likely to have their estrogen-receptor status tested and their tumor graded -- two important parts of the diagnostic work-up for breast cancer -- and were also more likely to choose mastectomy (complete removal of the breast) rather than lumpectomy.

To combat these facts, an interesting new approach has been developed by Atossa Genetics Inc.

The ForeCYTE Breast Health Test incorporates the use of an FDA-cleared, patented device, similar to a breast pump in appearance, that collects nipple fluid for testing in women between ages 18 and 73. The collected fluid can be used to identify normal versus premalignant versus malignant cells. The procedure is noninvasive, virtually painless for the patient and takes about 10 minutes. If necessary, precancerous changes can be addressed with lifestyle intervention or pharmaceutical treatment.

Ultimately, precancerous changes may be treated locally with therapy, also being developed by Atossa. The therapeutic system, which is in the research phase, will provide drugs to be introduced into a "sick duct" and reverse early changes before they become malignant. This technique avoids treating the entire patient with powerful but toxic drugs, instead acknowledging that the problem lies with a milk duct two inches long and the diameter of an angel hair pasta strand.

Women who might be at risk for breast cancer should ask their doctors if the ForeCYTE test is right for them.

(Source: PRNewswire)


 

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