Investigational procedure may make radiation therapy accessible to more women.
After undergoing a lumpectomy to remove the part of the breast affected by breast cancer, most women must undergo radiation therapy treatments. The standard course consists of six to seven weeks of therapy, five days a week. For women who live far from their radiation facilities, the burden associated with daily trips for almost two months can be too much to bear. As a result, some women have curtailed therapy, or even foregone radiation therapy altogether, despite the increased risk of their cancers recurring. A new kind of radiation therapy, Accelerated partial breast irradiation, or APBI, may now alleviate this travel burden and allow more women to complete this highly important therapy.