Sonia Ali, MD, a hematologist and oncologist at Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses how breast cancer treatment has become more personalized. Doctors today are better able to test whether breast cancer patients can safely skip chemotherapy as part of their treatment without hurting their chances to beat the disease.
The latest in breast cancer treatment is all about personalizing care. A lot of women immediately after diagnosis of breast cancer, the first thing they think about is chemotherapy. What we've done over the years is really look at specific tumors and the mutational burden of a patient's personal tumor to guide therapies. There are certain tests that we use in the clinic to help avoid using chemotherapy. It's all about maximizing the cure rate, but avoiding over-treatment.
Women should know that breast cancer can be treated in so many different ways. So, don't use your experience with someone else's treatment of breast cancer and assume it's going to be your own.