of Breast Cancer Surgery
for Pre-menopausal Women
According to research of Dr. William Hrushesky at the Albany
New York, Veterans Administration Medical Center, breast cancer
was less likely to fatally metastasize depending on when breast
cancer surgery was performed during the menstrual cycle. According
to Dr. Hrushesky, immune function, as well as the potential to
form new blood vessels necessary for cancer growth, changes during
the menstrual cycle.
Studies confirming his results indicate a two to fourfold difference
in ten-year survival depending on when the surgery was done.
"If they wish to time their surgery, I'll tell them, first
of all, they have to be regularly cycling. And that they should
plan to have the surgery between fourteen and twenty three days
after the first day of their last menstrual period. So, if their
menstrual period begins today, they probably should somewhere
between fourteen and fifteen and sixteen days have that surgery."
- Dr. William Hrushesky MD, VA Medical Hospital, Albany NY
Also, similar timing might be important for these women to consider
when scheduling biopsies. Although there are research data wars
that challenge Dr. Hrushesky, he states that the majority of well-done
studies confirms that there appears to be a benefit in timing
the surgery, to near ovulation and the week after. He also states
that further studies as he has been requesting, are needed.
One argument against timing your breast cancer surgery is that
it would delay needed surgery. This argument makes little sense
considering it amounts to a delay of two to three weeks at the
most, and has at least the possibility of affecting whether or
not the cancer returns.
Hrushesky "Breast Cancer, Timing of Surgery, and the Menstrual
Cycle: Call for Prospective Trial;" Journal of Women's Health,
Vol. 5, No. 6, 1996