Men should be included in trials to find better treatments for breast cancer

Barcelona, Spain: Professor Robert Mansel, Chair of the 11th European Breast Cancer Conference (EBCC-11) and Emeritus Professor of Surgery at Cardiff University School of Medicine, UK, has called for men to be included in trials to improve treatments for breast cancer.

Following new research presented by Professor Isabel Rubio [1] at EBCC-11 that showed that if women are pre-treated with targeted drugs to shrink tumours before surgery, they could avoid radical surgery, Prof Mansel said: “These findings could apply to men also, but we just don’t know because men with breast cancer are almost never included in clinical trials.

“We need trials to start including men, so that we can discover whether or not they respond in the same way to targeted treatments as women. They may not, because the hormones involved in the cancer are different, but until this is investigated in trials, we do not know what is the best treatment for them.

“The cosmetic result after surgery is important for men too,” he continued. “At present, men with breast cancer often undergo radical surgery to remove all the cancer, but why should surgeons remove the nipple and the areola, if it’s not necessary? Men feel self-conscious


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