SEOUL, Apr. 3 (Korea Bizwire) — An increasing number of breast cancer patients, after discovering a tumor in one of their breasts, are resorting to preventative surgeries to remove both breasts or ovaries to prevent tumors from spreading.
Preventive surgeries have been on the rise ever since Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie revealed that she received a preventive treatment for breast and ovarian cancer.
Daerim St. Mary’s Hospital showed that the recent increase in the number of patients receiving BRCA tests to determine if they are at high risk for breast cancer led to the higher number of those individuals resorting to preventive surgeries for breast and ovarian cancer.
Women carrying the BRCA gene are 5 to 10 times more likely to suffer from breast cancer with as high as 20 percent chance of the tumor spreading to the other breast within 10 years.
Preventive surgery reduces the chance of cancer recurrence down to less than 10 percent.
The hospital showed that the number of BRCA tests rose from 578 cases in 2010 all the way up to 5,880 cases in 2017.
As for the number of preventive surgeries, there were five double mastectomies for breast cancer patients carrying the BRCA gene in 2013, increasing to 29 cases in 2017.
Preventive removal of the ovaries also increased from 22 cases in 2013 to 79 cases in 2017.
“If the patient carries the BRCA gene with a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, she may consider preventive removal surgery,” said Dr. Kim Sung-won, director of Daerim Saint Mary’s Hospital.
D. M. Park (firstname.lastname@example.org)