Women with small, early-stage breast cancers may have a better chance of survival if they opt for a lumpectomy plus radiation rather than a mastectomy.
Researchers at Duke Cancer Institute followed more than 112,000 women with Stage 1 and 2 breast cancer.
The women who were treated with a lumpectomy and radiation had a better survival rate for breast cancer, as well as other types of cancer.
The biggest effect was among women older than 50 with hormone-sensitive breast cancers.
The question of why women appear to do better with lumpectomy and radiation remains to be answered.