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Breast Cancer Survivors Experience Cognitive Problems Several Years After Treatment | DeLand Malpractice Attorney

Breast Cancer Survivors Experience Cognitive Problems Several Years After Treatment

Breast cancer survivors, whether treated with radiation only or chemotherapy plus radiation, may experience cognitive problems for up to three years after treatment, according to a new study.

This new study indicates there may be treatment-specific ways that cancer therapies negatively impact cancer survivors’ mental abilities.

Previous research shows that chemotherapy can cause memory and concentration problems in breast cancer survivors. To compare the effects of various cancer treatments on such mental abilities, Dr. Paul Jacobsen and colleagues at the Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, examined 67 patients treated with radiation only, 62 breast cancer patients treated with chemotherapy plus radiation, and 184 women who had no history of cancer.

Neurophysical assessments were conducted on this study’s participants six months after completing treatment and again three years later. The assessment period is further out from the end of treatment than other studies of this type.

Researchers confirmed that chemotherapy can cause cognitive problems that persist for three years in breast cancer survivors after they complete treatment. The study also found that breast cancer survivors treated with radiation only often experienced problems similar to those treated with both chemotherapy and radiation. Researchers found that hormonal therapy, like tamoxifen, did not cause cognitive difficulties.

“These findings suggest that the problems some breast cancer survivors have with their mental abilities are not due just to the administration of chemotherapy,” said Dr. Jacobsen in a news release. “Our findings also provide a more complete picture of the impact of cancer treatment on mental abilities than studies that did not follow patients as long or look at mental abilities in breast cancer survivors who had not been treated with chemotherapy.”

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