A review of new publications by the Update Committee for the American Society of Clinical Oncology found that the guidelines for the follow-up and management of patients with breast cancer who have completed treatment are still sound.
The current recommendations from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) for the follow-up and management of patients with breast cancer who have completed treatment with the intent to cure are sound, according to a review of new publications by the Update Committee for ASCO.1
In 1997, the first ASCO guideline on breast cancer follow-up and management in asymptomatic patients after primary curative therapy was published. Updated guidelines were then published in 1999 and 2006. After reviewing and analyzing new data from 14 new publications that met inclusion criteria, the Update Committee concluded that the evidence was not compelling enough to warrant any changes to the 2006 guideline recommendation.2 All of these recommendations, which are highlighted in the Table, are designed not only to improve cancer care but also to reduce cost.
The Update Committee did identify a need for studies of the clinical usefulness of breast cancer tumor marker testing, which ultimately would lead to the development of tumor marker testing guidelines that are risk-based or tumor subtype specific (eg, triple-negative breast cancer). Another area needing more research is the effectiveness and quality of different models of survivorship care and ways to identify which patients would benefit from a specific models of care or from a new model of care tailored to the needs of a patient.
Table. Breast Cancer Follow-Up and Management Guidelines
Adapted from Khatcheressian JL, Hurley P, Bantug E, et al. J Clin Oncol. 2012.1
- After analysis of the new studies available since 2006, the ASCO guidelines from 2006 remain relevant and require no updating.
1. Khatcheressian JL, Hurley P, Bantug E, et al. Breast cancer follow-up and management after primary treatment: American Society of Clinical Oncology clinical practice guideline update. J Clin Oncol. 2012 Nov 5. [Epub ahead of print.]
2. Khatcheressian JL, Wolff AC, Smith TJ, et al. American Society of Clinical Oncology 2006 update of the breast cancer follow-up and management guidelines in the adjuvant setting. J Clin Oncol. 2006;24:5091-5097.
3. Schnipper LE, Smith TJ, Raghavan D, et al. American Society of Clinical Oncology identifies five key opportunities to improve care and reduce costs: the top five list for oncology. J Clin Oncol. 2012;30:1715-1724.