Here are some good links from ASCO regarding current state-of-the-art thinking regarding breast cancer patients' followup (http://bit.ly/Q7NcT6,http://bit.ly/MVYae5
). Some highlights of the summary include seeing the doctor routinely at increasing intervals, seeing a gynecologist routinely whilst taking tamoxifen (if the patient has a uterus/not had a hysterectomy), and *not* routinely ordering blood work tumor markers and imaging tests other than mammograms. These are ASCO-specific guidelines; deviations away from these guidelines are not necessarily good or bad and must be considered on a case-by-case basis. Many large cancer centers have "breast survivorship clinics" where breast cancer survivors have specially tailored medical and psychosocial programs at their disposal, for example. This area of oncology, like may other areas, still generates some controversy. For example, there has actually been a scientific trial looking at outcomes of early-stage breast cancer patients followed long-term by oncology specialists or family physicians (http://bit.ly/T19RRG)... no differences were found between the two groups. However, that said, most oncologists of which I'm aware (me included) prefer to see their patients long-term after treatment. Yet if a patient was motivated to integrate her long-term oncologic care with her primary care physician (PCP), and the oncologist discusses her case with her PCP, there is sufficient evidence available that this, too, is a valid form of survivorship care.