A new Website, called Predict, has been launched in the UK to help patients of breast cancer predict their survival chances. The Website has been designed to provide better accuracy when users input data such as their age, how the tumour was detected (e.g. through screening or finding a lump), width of tumour and the grade of cancer. After input, the system displays a prediction of the likelihood of survival for the next 5 to 10 years plus any extra benefits that can be gained from drug treatment.
The online tool was developed by a team led by Professor G. Wishart at Cambridge University Hospital’s breast unit and is available to Doctors and Patients for free. The group plans to regularly update the site as more information becomes available and emphasises that it is still “important for patients to work with their specialist to choose the right drug treatment following breast cancer surgery”.
Meanwhile, Predict comes just as a pill, hailed by some as “cancer’s penicillin moment”, that rapidly shrinks the most deadly skin cancer tumours was revealed. The drug, called PLX4032 is said to be the first cancer pill to use results from the full decoding of human DNA, and has already produced ‘spectacular’ trial results. Researchers hope that new gene-targeting drugs such as the PLX4032 will result in better treatment for patients.
Would you trust a computer-based diagnostic and prognostic system to assess a medical condition?
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