Erica L. Mayer, MD, MPH
There was a time when a cancer diagnosis brought a single-minded focus on fighting the disease, with less thought to quality of life afterward. But the sheer number of survivors— nearly 15 million in the United States, or 4% of the population—has brought greater attention to ensuring that cancer treatment does not cause other harms, since cancer patients are not only living but also living longer. The National Cancer Institute reports 41% of cancer survivors live 10 years or more, and 15% live 20 years or more.1
When tests offer prognostic and predictive information that the cancer will not respond to chemotherapy, she said, endocrine-based therapy is used instead.