This new prospective study from Italy confirms that, provided symptoms are reported promptly and treatment is conservative and appropriate, few women with breast cancer (perhaps 1% a year) die of it – ~83% die of other causes.
Thus care must be taken from early on to prevent all the other causes of premature death and disability- overweight; frailty fractures, diabetic- vascular disease, arthritis, visual and hearing loss, arthritis, infections, incontinence and dementia. Best results are obtained with lowcost combination of the natural full range of appropriate vigorous ~15 vitamins, ~10 minerals, ~35 biologicals and some herbs.
Elderly breast cancer patients treated by conservative surgery alone plus adjuvant tamoxifen: Fifteen-year results of a prospective study. Martelli G, et al National Cancer Institute, Milan, Italy.Cancer. 2008; 112; 3: 481-488
The authors followed 354 prospectively recruited women aged >/=70 years who had primary, operable breast cancer and no palpable axillary lymph nodes. All 354 women were treated with conservative surgery and adjuvant tamoxifen and without axillary dissection or postoperative radiotherapy. Women who had resection margins in tumor tissue were excluded. Endpoints were cumulative incidence of axillary disease, cumulative incidence of ipsilateral breast tumor recurrence (IBTR), and breast cancer mortality. RESULTS.: After a median follow-up of 15 (14-17) years, breast cancer mortality was 17%; the crude cumulative incidence was 4.2% (4% in pathologic T1 [pT1] tumors) for axillary disease, 8.3% (7.3% in pT1 tumors) for IBTR. . Of the 268 patients who died during follow-up, 222 patients (83%) died from causes unrelated to breast cancer. CONCLUSIONS.: Elderly patients with early breast cancer and no palpable axillary lymph nodes may be safely treated safety by conservative surgery without axillary dissection and without postoperative radiotherapy, provided that surgical margins are in tumor-free tissue and that hormone therapy is administered. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is also unnecessary because of the low cumulative incidence of axillary disease, and axillary surgery can be reserved for the small proportion of patients who later develop overt axillary disease.