A trial looking at giving 1 week of radiotherapy for breast cancer (FAST-Forward)

Cancer type:

Breast cancer

Status:

Open

Phase:

Phase 3

This trial is comparing 1 week of radiotherapy with 3 weeks of radiotherapy after surgery for breast cancer.

More about this trial

After having surgery to remove the cancer, doctors usually treat your breast and sometimes the lymph nodes under your arm with 3 weeks of radiotherapy. We know from research it may be possible to give radiotherapy over a shorter period of time.

The researchers want to compare giving 1 week of radiotherapy with 3 weeks of radiotherapy.

The aims of this trial are to find out

  • How well giving 1 week of radiotherapy works for breast cancer
  • How safe it is to give 1 week of radiotherapy
  • What the side effects are

Who can enter

You may be able to enter this trial if you

You cannot enter this trial if you

Trial design

This is a phase 3 trial. It will recruit over 4,000 people. It is a randomised trial. The people taking part will be put into 1 of 3 groups by a computer. Neither you nor your doctor can choose which group you are in.

The 3 groups are

  • 3 weeks of radiotherapy (15 doses)
  • 1 week of radiotherapy (5 doses)
  • 1 week of radiotherapy at a slightly lower dose (5 doses)

You have radiotherapy every day (Monday to Friday).

The researchers are also doing some extra studies as a part of this trial.

In the first extra study the researchers will ask you to fill in a questionnaire before you start treatment, after 3 and 6 months and then 1, 2, 5 and 10 years after treatment. It will ask you how you are feeling and about any side effects you have. This is called a quality of life study. People joining the trial now must agree to take part in the quality of life study.

You don't have to agree to take part in the following extra studies.

They will also ask to take a photo of your chest before you start treatment, and then 2, 5 and 10 years after treatment. They will compare the photos to see how the radiotherapy has affected the appearance of your breast, if at all. This is called the photographic study.

They will also ask your permission to take a blood sample and a tissue sample from when you had your surgery. They will ask for another tissue sample if your breast cancer comes back.

They will ask you to fill in a questionnaire about your immediate family (blood relatives).

Your blood and tissue samples will be anonymous and stored safely. The researchers will use them to find out more about radiotherapy and breast cancer.

Hospital visits

You go to the hospital for radiotherapy everyday from Monday to Friday. This will last for either 1 or 3 weeks, depending on which trial group you are in.

After you finish treatment, you see the trial doctors and have your breast examined every year for the next 10 years.

Side effects

The most common side effects of radiotherapy to the breast and lymph nodes include

We have more information about breast cancer radiotherapy side effects in our radiotherapy for breast cancer section.

Location

Bangor
Barnstaple
Basildon
Bath
Bedford
Birmingham
Blackburn
Blackpool
Boston
Brighton
Bristol
Burnley
Bury St Edmunds
Cambridge
Cardiff
Cheltenham
Chester
Colchester
Coventry
Dudley
Ealing Broadway
Eastbourne
Exeter
Forth Valley
Glasgow
Gloucester
Great Yarmouth
Guildford
Hereford
Huntingdon
Ipswich
Kendal
Kidderminster
Kilmarnock
Kings Lynn
Leeds
Lincoln
Liverpool
London
Luton
Middlesbrough
Northampton
Northwood
Norwich
Nuneaton
Oxford
Paisley
Peterborough
Plymouth
Portsmouth
Prescot
Preston
Reading
Redditch
Rhyl
Romford
Salisbury
Sheffield
Shrewsbury
Southampton
Southend on Sea
Stafford
Stoke-on-Trent
Sutton
Swansea
Taunton
Torbay
Truro
Walsall
Warrington
Warwick
West Bromwich
Weston Super Mare
Winchester
Wishaw
Wolverhampton
Worcester
Worthing
Wrexham
Yeovil

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Prof John Yarnold

Supported by

Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC)
Institute of Cancer Research (ICR)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer
NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

4556

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Harriet wanted to try new treatments

A picture of Harriet

“I was keen to go on a clinical trial. I wanted to try new cancer treatments and hopefully help future generations.”

Last reviewed:

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