Cancer Recurrence

Recurrence Rates: The Data Speaks… Sort Of

PJ Hamel Health Guide September 01, 2008
  • I often cruise the Web looking for breast cancer news, and found myself scratching my head at the following headlines I read recently, one right after the other, all on the same day:Risk of breast cancer relapse is low after surviving 5 years - USA Today  Relapse Still a Real Possibility for Bre...

5 Comments
  • Phyllis Johnson
    Health Guide
    Sep. 02, 2008

    I absolutely agree that our lives are better if we can focus on the possibility of staying well.  My own stats were that I was statistically likely to recur, but I chose to believe that I'd be in the minority that stayed well.  It seemed to me that if my time on earth was short, I shouldn't spend it being miserable.  If I defied the odds and...

    RHMLucky777

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    I absolutely agree that our lives are better if we can focus on the possibility of staying well.  My own stats were that I was statistically likely to recur, but I chose to believe that I'd be in the minority that stayed well.  It seemed to me that if my time on earth was short, I shouldn't spend it being miserable.  If I defied the odds and survived, I would have wasted a lot of worry for nothing!

    As far as how the two periodicals reported the same study, maybe it has to do with what side of the stethoscope the reader is on.  The audience for USA Today is lay people who need to feel hopeful that they or their loved ones can stay healthy.  The readers of Nursing Times probably need to be reminded to be alert for possible recurrence in their breast cancer survivor patients.

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Sep. 02, 2008

      Phyllis, I'm SO glad you've defied the statistics. Your positive attitude has doubtless brought you a long way. And good point about "which side of the stethoscope" you're on... I hadn't considered that. Thanks - PJ

  • me
    me
    Jun. 14, 2012

    I know it has been years since you posted those conflicting articles but I got a lot from what you said.  I was stage 3b 13% good Lord I could do that all day long.  My onc won't give me such stats.  to me 13% is much smaller than 87% who do NOT have it ever again.  87% yeah I can do that.  THANKS your article (as I too search the web...

    RHMLucky777

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    I know it has been years since you posted those conflicting articles but I got a lot from what you said.  I was stage 3b 13% good Lord I could do that all day long.  My onc won't give me such stats.  to me 13% is much smaller than 87% who do NOT have it ever again.  87% yeah I can do that.  THANKS your article (as I too search the web in my weak moment) was what I needed.  LOVED the contradiction of the same information.  It only said to me put my faith in Jesus, He is always the same.... and move on.  Thanks for the insight.  God bless you.

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jun. 14, 2012

      I'm so glad we could help you, at least emotionally - and that's a huge part of the battle, isn't it? I wish you well as you continue down the path - hold onto your faith! PJH

  • Anonymous
    David
    Oct. 18, 2009

    You have missed the point of the article.  These statistics are for women who have already survived for 5 years.  The recurrence rates are for after 5 years.