Surviving breast cancer not the end of the story

Breast cancer survival has improved dramatically over the last few decades.

Courtesy of earlier diagnosis and better treatments, five year survival has increased from 70% in the 1980s to 90%, says Melbourne medical oncologist, Dr Jacqueline Chirgwin in the latest issue of the MJA.

It is little wonder then that there is now increased focus on the ongoing general health in this ever-growing population of breast cancer survivors.

“Although breast cancer is worldwide the most common cancer in women, many, perhaps most patients die from other causes, ” she says.

Dr Chirgwin’s comments are in relation to an Australian study, published in the same issue of the journal which showed comorbid conditions are more likely to develop in women who have been diagnosed with hormone-dependent breast cancer than ...

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