One of the leading experts on radiation therapy for breast cancer says a new study in JAMA -- about breast cancer treatment - has misleading information and may unnecessarily deter women from getting breast brachytherapy, a safe and effective treatment.
Dr. Robert Kuske, a pioneer of breast brachytherapy and co-principal investigator on two major clinical trials, is available to respond to the JAMA article. The paper from MD Anderson researchers, which will be published on May 2, reports slightly increased complications for breast brachytherapy (also called accelerated partial breast irradiation, or APBI) compared to whole breast irradiation (WBI).
Dr. Kuske, an outspoken researcher of breast brachytherapy for properly selected patients, points out that the JAMA article compares WBI to an older form of breast brachytherapy with less control of radiation dose. Newer research shows that "single-channel" balloon therapy is being supplanted by "strut-based" brachytherapy that allows the oncologist more flexibility in shaping the dose cloud.
Will the JAMA study, if unchallenged, deny women access to modern breast brachytherapy? Dr. Kuske fears it may do just that and may endanger completion of the long-term, critically important "NSABP B-39" study he co-leads.
Dr. Kuske says that the JAMA article: