Any kind of cancer diagnosis is frightening, but pancreatic cancer is especially difficult to treat. A new study from the Mayo Clinic tells patients that while surgery and chemotherapy are the standard, they should also consider radiation therapy as well. Radiation therapy was associated with a lower risk of cancer recurrence in pancreatic cancer surgery patients, making it, like chemotherapy, an important addition to treatment.
The researchers studied 458 patients who had pancreatic cancer surgery at Mayo Clinic between March 1987 and January 2011. Of those patients, 378 received chemotherapy and radiation therapy after surgery, and 80 had only chemotherapy after their operations.
Eighty percent of those who received chemotherapy and radiation after surgery had no recurrence of cancer within the area targeted by the radiation, the tumor bed and lymph nodes, within five years after diagnosis. That compared with 68 percent of those who had chemotherapy only following their operations. Additionally, patients who received radiotherapy had longer survival times. This video explains more about the findings, check it out.