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When OncoType Recurrence Score is "Intermediate"

italianchef Member Posts: 13

Interested to hear about decision-making/thought process when considering benefits of chemo (vs. risks and side effects) -- my Oncotype DX score was 22 which is considered "intermediate", so my medical oncologist is offering chemo (TC), if I want it. With the patient-specific characteristics added to the result, my distant recurrence estimates were the following:

- With Tamoxifen: 7% individualized distant recurrence risk at 10 years / 3% individualized absolute chemo benefit

- With Aromatase Inhibitor (and ovarian suppression or oophorectomy): 6% individualized distant recurrence risk at 10 years / 2% individualized absolute chemo benefit

I'm really having a hard time deciding whether or not to do the chemo. Has anyone else faced this? Is a 3 or 4% reduction in risk "worth" the risks and side effects of chemo? The recommended chemo is TC (Taxotere and Cytoxan).


  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,883

    Welcome, italianchef. We're so sorry you find yourself here, but we hope this community can be a source of support for you - we know what a difficult decision this can be, especially in that 'gray' area. Whether or not chemo is 'worth' the risk is not necessarily a question that can be answered matter-of-factly, as everyone's chemo experience is different and their experiences with side effects, recovery, etc will certainly factor into their personal stories. If you search 'oncotype' in the chemo forum, you'll find several threads with a variety of responses, but these two in particular might be of interest to you: and

    We also recently shared this research study addressing intermediate oncotype scores and chemo, it's worth a read:

    Ultimately, it comes down to what your doctor recommends and what risk you are willing or comfortable with! We're here for you, whatever you decide.

    The Mods

  • italianchef
    italianchef Member Posts: 13

    Thanks so much for these really helpful links!

  • meow13
    meow13 Member Posts: 1,363

    My oncodx was 34 high recommend chemo, I had 1 ILC and 1 IDC each 1cm er 95% positive and pr less that 1% pr negative. So I looked at the sample size and stats and decided not to do chemo. It indicated a reduction from 23% to maybe 11%, so I said no to chemo did 4 years AI drugs. No cancer this year is year 12 for me.

    Just wasn't wanting to suffer health effects to intestinal tract, I had suffered from IBS - D in the past. I was 53 when diagnosed in 2011.

  • italianchef
    italianchef Member Posts: 13

    Thank you for sharing your perspective!