Jane lives with her husband and daughter in a village just outside Glastonbury in Somerset (UK) where she works as a kitchen and bathroom designer for a local company. In March 2018, at the age of 50, Jane received a call after a routine mammogram had detected something unusual. Further investigation showed that she had Stage 2 invasive breast cancer, and a small lump was also found under her arm. Two weeks after surgery, she had a follow up with her surgeon. He had completely removed the tumour from her breast, and although he removed several lymph nodes from under her arm, only one was active. Her doctor then explained she had options to inform her treatment. She could opt for chemotherapy or she could use the Oncotype DX Breast Recurrence Score® test, which could help her evaluate her risk of recurrence and how beneficial chemotherapy might be for her. Jane wanted to understand her risk more fully before she made a decision, so she instructed her oncologist to order the test. Her doctor called her with the Recurrence Score® result, which indicated that she did not need chemotherapy. Jane describes hearing her results and feeling, “just amazing!” Looking back, Jane is certain the Oncotype DX® test had a profound influence on her treatment and recovery.
The day she was told she had cancer, Jane’s overriding concern was how to tell her daughter, Ella, who was just about to take her high-school exams. She knew her daughter would not want to see her struggle through chemotherapy. The Recurrence Score® result helped Jane make the decision to spare her and her family from the harsh side effects of chemotherapy. Jane feels incredibly fortunate to have received the best care and advice from the oncology department at her local hospital, and she’s forever grateful to them and the Oncotype DX® test for making her cancer experience as positive as it could be.
Not all patients Oncotype Recurrence Score results suggest that chemotherapy can be spared. Some patients’ results may indicate that chemotherapy would be beneficial and thus likely recommended.