Imagine being able to skip chemotherapy during a fight against breast cancer. A genetic test is helping doctors to determine which breast cancer patients can do just that.
Even after Myra Hartman was diagnosed with breast cancer, her diagnosis did not fully register until she found herself awaiting results from the Oncotype Dx test.
The Oncotype Dx test is a genetic test that looks at 21 different genes, and helps doctors figure out who will most likely see a recurrence of cancer, and who will not. Although this test is designed for women with smaller tumors, as opposed to all patients, it enables doctors to determine whether or not a patient can forego chemotherapy.
Dr. Tom Sweeney, a medical oncologist at OhioHealth, explains that this test groups patients into one of three categories: high risk, intermediate risk and low risk.
Patients categorized in the high risk category are directed toward chemotherapy, while patients who have a low risk are directed toward other forms of treatment.
Myra ended up with a score that put her in the low risk group – her test results helped in her decision to skip chemotherapy and instead undergo surgery and radiation therapy. She feels blessed to have been able to skip the side effects of chemo.
All women are encouraged to conduct breast self-exams and schedule regular mammograms, to help aid in early detection of breast cancer. For more information about prevention, diagnosis and treatment of this disease, please visit https://www.ohiohealth.com/cancer/cancers-we-treat/breast-cancer/ ?utm_campaign=youtube%20videos?utm_source=youtube?utm_medium=social%20
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