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Re: Affect Overall Survival


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Dear Experts,

So often during Earl's illness the doctors would say that a treatment would not affect overall survival. I have seen this phrase used numerous times in articles and posts. This is being used for treatments that are not considered palliative.

Question, why do we give these treatments if they will not affect the overall survival? Isn't that the point of treatment?

Thank you.

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We do lots of treatments that don't affect overall survival. Anything beyond second line chemotherapy does not affect overall survival. Iressa does not affect overall survival. Even post-operative radiation does not affect overall survival. These statements are made based on statistics from large studies. Of course, no person is a statistic and as we all know, there are individuals who will definitely live longer if the treatment works against their individual cancer (Iressa is case in point).

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