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Dawn Klemow-Reed, M.D. Answers Questions On Breast Cancer Care

Dawn Klemow-Reed, M.D. Answers Questions On: Breast Cancer Care

Why is cancer care unique at UT Southwestern Medical Center?

Because we’re an academic medical institution, our focus is patient care along with research. That means the patients we treat can benefit from the newest thinking regarding cancer evaluation and diagnosis – as well as have access to new therapies and clinical trials. Many of the newer therapies are only available at UT Southwestern.

Is it possible to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy?

It depends on the options we use to treat the cancer. Our team can work with many patients to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy. For some patients, we may be able to suggest alternatives – besides chemotherapy – that will be effective and have fewer side effects.

What are the latest advancements in biologic agents?

The patient’s immune system is used to target and destroy cancer cells, and prevent the growth of new cancer cells. The production of HER2, a protein that presents itself in some breast cancer patients, is inhibited by biologic agents such as Herceptin®.

When is hormone therapy an option?

This may be an option when certain types of breast cancer cells can be targeted and destroyed using specific hormones. This approach typically decreases the production of certain hormones, such as estrogen, progesterone, and estradiol, which can effectively block the growth of cancer cells. Tamoxifen® is one of the drugs used.