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Breast cancer, mortality more than halved from 1975 to today – Medicine

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Breast cancer, mortality more than halved from 1975 to today – Medicine

From 1975 to 2019, mortality from breast cancer reduced by 58% in the USA, going from 48 deaths per 100 thousand women to 27 per 100 thousand. The progress can be attributed 25% to screening, 29% to improvements in treatment in the metastatic phase and 47% to those in stages between I and III. This is what emerges from a study coordinated by researchers from Stanford University and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.


The study reviewed data on breast cancer mortality over the last 45 years by applying mathematical models to estimate the contribution to progress from each therapeutic and diagnostic innovation.


One of the most relevant findings of the study is that, if progress in the earliest forms of the disease is observable in the distant past, “the improvements in survival after the appearance of metastases have been largely concentrated in the last 10 years, with an improvement average survival of 1.4 years”, we read in an editorial published to accompany the study. This result is the reflection of a great availability of drugs for the metastatic forms of the disease: in recent years 26 have arrived on the market, a number 6 times higher than those indicated for the early forms.


Among the tumor forms, those that have enjoyed the most progress are those positive for hormone receptors, while other types of breast cancer still have a higher mortality rate. Even in this field, however, we can glimpse new developments: “It is worth drawing attention to the emergence of promising antibody-drug conjugates in metastatic breast cancer, which have yet to be approved for early-stage disease but show significant promise for triple-negative breast cancer,” the editorial adds.

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