New breast cancer treatment drastically cuts down recovery time - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

New breast cancer treatment drastically cuts down recovery time

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There's a new breakthrough in technology and it cuts down recovery time for those with breast cancer.

The new method drastically cuts down the time needed for radiation treatments.

59News reporter Jessie Gavin spoke with a Radiation Oncologist in Beckley about how this is helping patients.

My mother was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in March, 2010. She underwent a mastectomy and 8 rounds of chemotherapy before 7 weeks of radiation treatment.

She told us what the recovery was like for such a longer treatment period.

"I had to go through 36 days of radiation treatment and that took quite a while to recover from the burns," Jessie's mother Martha Bennis said.

Normal rounds of radiation treatment take around 7 weeks to complete, with the Accelerated Partial Breast Treatment, it's finished in five DAYS.

Had the new accelerated treatment been offered to her, she said it would have been something to consider with a professional.

"I probably would have been interested in learning more about that. Less radiation is probably a good thing, as long as my Radiation Oncologist reviewed my case and told me that I was a good candidate for that," Bennis said.

Come with me, Dr. Shimm is doing a show and tell of the new accelerated treatment. Dr. Shimm told 59News who would not be recommended for the new technology.

"Somebody who requires chemotherapy is going to have a more aggressive disease. Patients who are considered most appropriate for these accelerated treatments are patients without the most aggressive forms of the disease," said Dr. Shimm.

For women with a family history of breast cancer, mammogram's are recommended at an earlier age.

For more information on Accelerated Treatment, take a look at http://www.cancer.org/cancer/news/news/accelerated-breast-radiation-cheaper-faster-and-just-as-effective