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Assessing the clinical impact of prognostic factors: When is “statistically significant” clinically useful?

  • Daniel F. Hayes
  • Bruce Trock
  • Adrian L. Harris

Abstract

Very few tumor markers have been recommended for routine clinical care of patients with breast cancer [1]. A framework to determine the clinical utility of tumor markers is required. In a previous publication, a “Tumor Marker Utility Grading System” (TMUGS) was proposed [2]. TMUGS included a semi-quantitative grading scale (0-3+) which can be used to assign a score to a given tumor marker for a given outcome. Only those markers that are felt to be sufficiently strong to influence a therapeutic decision that results in improved clinical outcome for the patient are recommended. The studies from which data are used to assign a TMUGS grade can be placed into one of five Levels of Evidence (LOE).

Key words

tumor markers prognostic factors predictive factors breast cancer patient management treatment decisions 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel F. Hayes
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bruce Trock
    • 1
  • Adrian L. Harris
    • 3
  1. 1.Breast Cancer ProgramLombardi Cancer Center, Georgetown University Medical CenterWashington, D. CUSA
  2. 2.Georgetown University Medical CenterWashington, D.C.USA
  3. 3.Medical Oncology Unit and Molecular Oncology LaboratoryImperial Cancer Research Fund, Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford, John Radclijfe HospitalOxfordUK

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