According to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC), breast cancer is the second most common malignancy to affect women in the US, after skin cancer. In 2019, 264,121 women were diagnosed with breast cancer, of which 42,280 women lost their lives to it, per the latest available data. However, hope is on the horizon.
Latest advances in medical equipment, treatment protocols, and effective drugs are poised to treat aggressive breast cancers more effectively. Let’s look at some of the latest developments:
A growing awareness that aggressive breast cancer is a systemic disease
There is increasing awareness among researchers and clinicians that breast cancer is not limited to breasts alone. It is a systemic disease that can affect the entire body. Hence, doctors are now of the view that a systemic approach is necessary to stop aggressive breast cancer from spreading to unaffected areas. This approach uses antibody treatments and immunotherapies to target cancer cells across the body. The idea is to stop the tumour cells from spreading to adjoining areas. Hence, precision medicine that targets specific cancer cells is currently under research.
Regardless of the approach, breast cancer can severely reduce the quality of life. Consequently, physicians are also exploring several ways to improve women’s quality of life.
Growth of drugs with fewer side effects and a focus on scar reduction
Although no two cancers are alike, newer drugs and advanced equipment are simplifying treating aggressive breast cancer. It’s been seen that drugs such as Xeloda and Neulasta are more effective and have fewer side effect profiles. Xeloda blocks residual tumour cells so that cancer does not spread to other organs, which results in metastasised growth.
In addition, both surgery and radiation are also evolving immensely. They are now less invasive and more effective at treating aggressive breast cancers.
As cancer surgery is known to destroy many nerves, there is a growing interest in nerve reconnection, scar reduction, and aesthetic enhancement. Skin-sparing mastectomies and reconstruction treatments are also being leveraged to help reduce the psychological distress women with aggressive breast cancers experience while preventing cancer recurrence.
Adopting advanced treatment protocols to treat aggressive breast cancer
Previously, oncologists used a combination of radiosurgery, chemotherapy, and double mastectomies to tackle the spread of tumour cells in specific areas. However, advances in chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery are working toward making cancer treatment less invasive and life-changing.Back to Clinical