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Breast cancer can recur 5 to 20 yrs after treatment

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Women who have recovered from breast cancer have reason to worry, as the possibility exists of recurrence of breast cancer after it has been treated.

This has been revealed in a study conducted by Early Breast Cancer Trialists' Collaborative Group (EBCTCG) in England.This group has been pooling research into a single data set since the 1980s, looking at all aspects of breast cancer.

It has been revealed that cancer can occur elsewhere on the body.

EBCTCG took the data from 88 clinical trials, including those of 63,923 women with Estrogen Receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer. ER-positive is the most common cancer that occurs in around 80 per cent of women.

The study, which has been published in New England Journal of Medicine, revealed that women who had recovered from cancer and took therapy for five years, were reported to be again suffering from cancer throughout the body over the following 15 years.

Dr. Daniel F. Hayes, senior author of the study, has said that even though these women remained free of recurrence in the first five years, the risk of developing their cancer on bone, liver and lung from years five to twenty remained constant.

The study highlighted that women were recurrence-free when they stopped the endocrine therapy, they had a 40 percent risk of cancer recurrence within 15 years.

Prof Hongchao Pan, lead author of the study, informed that there have been many studies that claim that breast cancer is possible after its diagnosis but findings of this study validate and confirm the relentless risk of distant recurrence over the two decades after diagnosis.

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