Mexico: Essential test for breast cancer

“Mamma print” is already available to all eligible Mexicans, a genomic analysis test can prevent the chemotherapy treatment in patients with breast cancer. The test focuses on the molecular diagnosis of the tumor so that doctors can provide personalized treatment for patients. With this next- generation diagnosis, doctors can treat patients with therapies by validating genetic receptivity to drugs.

The test, of European origin, classifies patients diagnosed in early non-metastatic stages into two risk groups. Patients in the low-risk group very likely would not to require chemotherapy. In Mexico, 55% of all breast cancer patients in the early stages do not need chemotherapy, but, 95% of them are treated with chemotherapy. This test would help to avoid “unnecessary toxicity”, as well as the contraindications and side-effects of both chemotherapy and drugs. The public health sector can significantly reduce its costs with this test, in addition to being sure to give the treatment that the patient needs. It is normal for patients who react badly to chemotherapy to be hospitalized to treat other types of discomfort from treatment. Of the cancer cases diagnosed in the country, 20% (190,000) correspond to breast, a disease that is covered by the Mexican health system. This is the first time that the public health system has introduced a genomic test into its diagnostic table. This decision was taken by the General Health Council from WHO estimates, according to which 1 in 3 Mexicans will have a diagnosis of cancer throughout their life. The private insurance sector in Mexico has had this test since 2009, which has generated savings of approximately USD23 million.


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