As secondary breast cancer remains incurable, for people living with secondary breast cancer treatments are a part of every day life. Timely access to drugs and other treatment lines is vital.
There are many different treatment options available for secondary breast cancer with the aim to relieve symptoms and crucially, control and slow down the spread of the cancer for as long as possible while giving the patient the best possible quality of life for as long as possible. Treatments lines are determined by the oncology team and will take into consideration:
- The type of breast cancer you have
- How far it has spread and which part of the body it has spread to
- What treatments you have had so far
- How quickly your cancer is growing
- Your general health
- Hormone therapy
- Targeted biological therapies
As part of your treatment you may be offered to take part in a clinical trial. Your specialist will talk to you about clinical trials or you can ask if there are any trials that are appropriate for you.
Clinical trials aim to find new or better treatments for secondary breast cancer
- new drug treatments
- new doses or regimes of drugs
- new ways of measuring response to treatment
- new types of palliative and supportive care to control symptoms
- patient attitudes towards treatments
- how treatment affects quality of life
In Breast Care Now’s survey of over 2000 patients living with secondary breast cancer (October 2019) found that only 23% of respondents had discussed participating in a specific trial with a health professional. It’s vital everyone has access to the treatments they need and part of Make 2nds Count mission is to raise awareness and inform and facilitate access to patient trials.