Gwen’s best of SABCS 2011: One dose of pre-operative ketorolac (Toradol) prevents early breast cancer relapse

January 8, 2012

You can find an overview of the most important presentations of the 2011 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium here. Poster #2-01-06 by M. Retsky and others This fascinating report comes from an international study headed by the Harvard School of Public Health[1]. First, a little background. One mystery yet unsolved is why some patients recur […]

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Gwen’s Best of SABCS 2011: Overview

January 8, 2012

In early December, San Antonio is a very colorful town. At night, the lights on the trees, horse-drawn carriages and the Riverwalk provide a calm and picturesque view of the city. Not so during the day. Along with several thousand other oncologists, researchers and patient advocates, I descended upon the convention center at 7 AM […]

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Prevent Breast Cancer from Becoming Resistant to Anti-estrogen Treatments

October 25, 2011

An updated report was posted on February 9, 2012: you can find it here A wave of excitement must have washed over the big annual European cancer conference, EMCC, last month when a multinational group of researchers showed how they were able to reverse resistance to anti-estrogen drugs. Here’s a little background on why this […]

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Always Get a Second Pathology Opinion

July 14, 2011

Getting a correct reading of your biopsy specimen is very, very important – particularly since this talent is as much an art as it is a science. If the wrong information is provided then you will not receive the correct treatment. In my experience, nothing makes a patient madder than to have had toxic treatment […]

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Bisphosphonates: a minimally toxic way to reduce risk of breast cancer relapse

May 20, 2011

Folks who know me also know that I’m always on the look-out for minimally toxic ways to decrease the risk of breast cancer relapse. One tried-and-true way is to give medications after the breast cancer surgery, radiation and chemotherapy has been completed. The best example of this is using anti-estrogen drugs for 3 to 5 […]

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References for “Advances in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer, Part 2” podcast

April 27, 2011

Here’s the clinical trial looking at using bicalutamide in those with androgen receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer Here’s the research paper showing that CMF chemotherapy results in far fewer relapses than anthracycline-based chemotherapy. Here’s a link to the podcast. © 2011 Gwendolyn M Stritter, MD. All rights reserved. Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on […]

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Deciphering Medical Research, Part 4 – Using a Meaningful Standard of Success

April 13, 2011

(See Part 1 in this series of articles, Deciphering Medical Research, here) In this series, I have explained that evidence of effectiveness in non-human research often is not predictive of that in humans. I have also shown why bias, while contradicatory to the very foundation of science, is inescapable and therefore very important to recognize […]

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Mammograms Less Accurate in Women Who Have Had Breast Cancer

March 17, 2011

An international group of researchers headed by Dr. Nehmat Houssami at the University of Sydney School of Public Health recently published the results of a well-designed study that shows breast cancer survivors have a higher proportion of false-negative mammogram reports (i.e. mammogram says there is no cancer when there actually is).[1] This was especially true […]

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Deciphering Medical Research, Part 3: Why Bias Matters

February 22, 2011

(See Part 1 in this series of articles, Deciphering Medical Research, here) Now that you know the importance of clinical trials, the next step is to determine whether the clinical trial results are completely unbiased. There are several ways researchers protect their work from hidden (and not-so-hidden) biases. First of all, they design a study […]

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Deciphering Medical Research, Part 2: Preclinical vs. Clinical Research

February 10, 2011

(See Part 1 in this series of articles, Deciphering Medical Research, here) To rapidly determine the likely effectiveness of the research drug or nutriceutical du jour, it is important to know the difference between pre-clinical and clinical research. Pre-clinical studies are either in vitro or in vivo. In vitro research is done on breast cancer […]

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