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Breast Cancer Blood Test Available, But Not Proven

Detecting breast cancer with just a blood sample is the goal of several new tests hitting the market, but experts say it's too early to tell whether using such tests could make a difference in terms of patients' treatment and survival. One new test, called ClearID Breast Cancer, is marketed for detecting breast-cancer recurrence in women whose cancer is in remission, and also for detecting breast cancer in women at high risk of the disease. Breast-cancer survivors (women in remission) are typically monitored with a physical exam and a check for symptoms, as well as mammograms every six months to a year. Tests such as CT scans and blood tests for tumor markers (similar to ClearID) are not recommended for women who don't have any symptoms, said Dr. Charles Shapiro, director of breast medical oncology at Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.