New early Breast Cancer Test guiding adjuvant Chemotherapy Decisions

Oncotype DX is only suitable for certain types of breast cancer

'Chemotherapy-sparing' test offered
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK

A new breast cancer test – Oncotype DX – that could spare thousands of women the ordeal of chemotherapy has been approved – by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) – for use in the NHS in England and Wales.

The test works out the odds of a some tumours spreading round the body and should help doctors decide more accurately which patients will need chemotherapy.

Read Chemotherapy-sparing’ test offered, by James Gallagher, BBC News, 26 Sept 2013

Sources: Gene expression profiling and expanded immunohistochemistry tests for guiding adjuvant chemotherapy decisions in early breast cancer management: MammaPrint, Oncotype DX, IHC4 and Mammostrat
NICE, September 2013

DES and Breast Cancer:

Warnings of Three-Person IVF Risks

The Move Crosses a Crucial Ethical Line

Warning of three-person IVF 'risks'
The move crosses a “crucial ethical line”

Concerns about the safety of a pioneering therapy to create babies with DNA from three people are raised by researchers in the UK and Australia.

The idea has also raised ethical concerns from groups concerned about the impact of altering human genetic inheritance.

Read Warning of three-person IVF ‘risks’
by James Gallagher, BBC News, 19 Sept 2013.

Related post: The UK Government considering #IVF Babies Creation with Three Genetic Parents.

Understanding why some Women have repeated Miscarriages

“Crucial” new recurrent miscarriage insight

'Crucial' new recurrent miscarriage insight
Losing several pregnancies in a row causes incredible psychological distress and anguish

Fertility scientists say they have made a “crucial breakthrough” – that “steroids shouldn’t be given to all” – in understanding why some women have repeated miscarriages.

Read Crucial’ new recurrent miscarriage insight
by James Gallagher, BBC News Health and Science, 12 Sept 2013.

DES daughters have a higher risk of recurrent miscarriages.
If you know or think you may have been exposed to DES it’s important to inform your doctor and gynaecologist.

More about DES pregnancy risks – read DES studies on fertility and pregnancy.

Doctors Duty to inform Patients: call for better Cancer Fertility Care for young Women in the UK

Discussing fertility preservation at the time of cancer diagnosis: Dissatisfaction of young females

Discussing fertility preservation at the time of cancer diagnosis: Dissatisfaction of young females
Call for better cancer fertility care for young women in the UK

The care for young women needing cancer treatment which could damage their chances of having children needs to be improved, researchers say.


Sperm banking is widely available for post-pubertal male cancer patients but options for females remain limited. Anecdotal evidence suggests that fertility issues may be inadequately discussed with females.
To understand the experience of both sexes in the UK, surveys of young cancer survivors were performed seven years apart.

Data were collected from young cancer survivors aged over 13 years at diagnosis, attending support group conferences held in 2004 and 2011. Data were collected anonymously using remote handsets in response to questions projected on the screen during plenary sessions.

A total of 81 female and 69 males responded in 2004, and 69 females and 71 males in 2011. In both years, most males reported fertility discussions taking place before treatment started and they were generally satisfied with it. However in both years, fewer females recall a discussion about fertility and they were generally less satisfied. Although in 2011 more females reported a fertility discussion prior to the beginning of treatment, they were no more satisfied than the females in 2004 whose fertility discussion were more likely to take place after treatment had started.

Whilst male cancer survivors in the UK are generally satisfied about the frequency and timing of discussions about fertility, females are not. Although in 2011 fertility discussions with females more often took place before treatment began, they were no more satisfied than females in 2004. This may reflect the approach by professionals or the absence of effective fertility preservation strategies for them.