Esophageal Treatment – Better Responses for Female Patients

Esophageal Treatment – Better Responses for Female Patients

A new study showed that female patients who suffer from advanced esophageal cancer and receive treatment with chemotherapy and radiation therapy before surgery are more likely to have a favorable response to the treatment than the male patients. According to the study that was published in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, women experience a less of a risk for cancer reoccurrence than males.

The senior author of the study, K. Rober Shen, MD, from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester stated that the esophageal cancer is one of the deadliest and dangerous cancer types in the world and that it can affect men and women differently: women tend to respond better to the treatments, while men are more at risk to develop this kind of cancer.


The statistics are not good, it is confirmed that esophageal cancer is four times more common in men than women, states the American Cancer Society. The society also brings out a concerning fact: they estimate that there will be approximately 16,940 (3,580 women, 13, 360 men) new cases of esophageal cancer in 2017. What is more worrying is the number of deaths, reaching 15,690 (2,970 women, 12,720 men) and the lifetime risk of developing this type of cancer is 1 in 454 for women and 1 in 125 for men.

This study is unique in its own way, because it is the only one to use a methodology where male and female patients were matched based on specific features in order to eliminate confounding factors.

Dr. Shen also suggests that the study represents the largest group of women ever studied specifically to evaluate the impact of gender on response to treatment. Dr. Shen added that the results of the study are intriguing because they show how focusing on specific or individualized features has an impact on esophageal cancer treatment. Knowing where to start and how to approach this difficult matter is paving the way to more successful and improving outcomes for future patients. 

Anna Daniels

Anna is an avid blogger with an educational background in medicine and mental health. She is a generalist with many other interests including nutrition, women's health, astronomy and photography. In her free time from work and writing, Anna enjoys nature walks, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.

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