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Test can spare breast cancer patients the need for chemotherapy

The approximately 5,200 women diagnosed with breast cancer each year in Austria are divided into subgroups. Hormone-receptor positive tumors are the most common type of breast cancer. Their growth is supported by the female sexual hormone estrogen. The standard therapy for this kind of tumor is the so-called anti-hormonal therapy.

Up until now, further treatment was determined on the basis of clinical parameters such as the size of the tumor, the occurrence of lymph nodes, age and hormone sensitivity.  In order to reduce the risk of having a relapse, doctors often decide to carry out chemotherapy over a period of months, with all the related side effects such a tiredness, loss of hair, nausea and other symptoms.

In this regard, this type of therapy would not be necessary in some cases, in light of the fact that some patients would anyway have had a low relapse risk. This risk is now identified by the Prosigna(R) test. These patients have a risk of less than ten percent over the next ten years, which applies to about one third of all breast cancer patients. 

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