Research News

Extra radiation to lymph nodes reduces breast cancer recurrence, studies show

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h4012 (Published 23 July 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h4012
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. 1London

Giving radiotherapy to the lymph nodes in addition to standard treatment with whole breast irradiation after breast conserving surgery significantly reduces breast cancer recurrence but has no effect on overall survival, two studies in the New England Journal of Medicine have shown.1 2

The first study1 randomised 1832 women with early stage breast cancer to treatment with whole breast irradiation plus irradiation of regional lymph nodes, including the internal mammary, supraclavicular, and axillary lymph nodes, or to whole breast irradiation alone.

All of the women had axillary node positive breast cancer or high risk node negative disease, with …

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