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Getting personal: Breast cancer treatment

Scan showing breast cancer patient before and after successful immunotherapy treatment
Breast cancer patient who responded to immunotherapy. Left is pretreatment (upper chest wall, lower liver) with yellow arrows pointing to the tumors. Right is after treatment with all tumors gone. Photo: Steven A. Rosenberg/NCI

Advances in breast cancer research — including some illuminating studies published this week — offer physicians and patients a growing set of tools for both diagnosis and treatment, several experts told Axios.

The big picture: As doctors further understand the complicated subtypes of breast cancers, many have been able to rely less on the more traditional, aggressive treatments (such as radical mastectomies), while trying new strategies of testing and targeting specific tumors or cancer subtypes.