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Breast Cancer Meds Won't Raise Chances of Heart Attack, Stroke, Study Suggests

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, April 21, 2016 – Treatment with estrogen-lowering drugs called aromatase inhibitors doesn't raise the risk of heart attacks and strokes among breast cancer survivors, a new study suggests. However, the researchers did find that women who took the drugs had a slightly higher risk of less serious heart problems, such as an abnormal heart beat or swelling and irritation of the membrane surrounding the heart. "Our study is a comprehensive assessment of the impact aromatase inhibitors have on cardiovascular risk and provides reassurance that the hormone therapy to reduce breast cancer recurrence does not increase risk of the most fatal cardiovascular events," said study author Reina Haque. She is a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente's Southern California Department of Research and Evaluation. "A particular strength of our study is that we accounted for women's other potential ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Femara, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Letrozole, Aromasin, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Exemestane, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Breast Cancer - Male, Tamoxifen Hexal, Tamoxen, Genox, Teslac, Nolvadex D, Tamofen

1 in 4 Breast Cancer Lumpectomies Requires Follow-Up Surgery

Posted 17 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17, 2016 – Women with early stage breast cancer who opt for a breast-conserving surgery known as a lumpectomy have a one in four chance they will need a second operation within 90 days, researchers report. "The chance of getting a second surgery has gone down a little, but it is still high and it is substantial," said study author Dr. Art Sedrakyan. He is a professor of health care policy and research at Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York City. In a lumpectomy, the tumor tissue, along with a margin of surrounding tumor-free tissue, is removed. However, if the tissue in the margin is not completely free of tumor cells, a second operation is needed. During the study period, which ran from 2003 through 2013, the overall rate of re-operation within 90 days was almost 31 percent, Sedrakyan said. It declined from nearly 40 percent in 2003 through 2004, to 23 percent ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Surgical Prophylaxis, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Vascular Surgery, Tamoxifen Hexal, Soltamox, Tamone, Tamoxen, Genox, Nolvadex D, Tamofen, Tamosin, Emblon, Nolvadex

Early Chemo Less Likely to Help Black Breast Cancer Patients: Study

Posted 12 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 11, 2015 – Early chemotherapy is less likely to benefit black women with breast cancer than those in other racial and ethnic groups, a new study finds. Advanced breast cancer is more common among black, Hispanic and Asian women than it is in white women. As a result, black women often receive chemotherapy before surgery in an effort to improve their outcomes, the Yale University Cancer Center researchers said. But their study of 27,300 women with stage 1 to 3 breast cancer showed that early (neoadjuvant) chemotherapy was less effective in black patients than in other women. "Even when we controlled for the fact that minority women often present with more advanced-stage, higher-grade tumors, and more aggressive types of breast cancer overall, our team was surprised to find that black women did not respond as well to neoadjuvant chemotherapy compared to other racial groups," ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Herceptin, Casodex, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant

Two Drugs Equal in Preventing Early Breast Cancer's Return: Study

Posted 11 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 11, 2015 – Postmenopausal women who have an early, noninvasive form of breast cancer had similar recurrence rates of disease whether they took the drug tamoxifen or the aromatase inhibitor anastrozole after surgery, new research shows. However, the side effects of the two medications differed greatly, said study author Jack Cuzick, director of the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine at Queen Mary University of London, England. His team looked at nearly 3,000 women, all past menopause, who had hormone-receptor positive ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) breast cancer and underwent surgery to excise it. With DCIS, the cells that line the milk ducts have changed but not spread into the surrounding breast tissue. Half the women were randomly assigned to take 1 milligram (mg) a day of anastrozole (Arimidex), while the other half took 20 mg a day of tamoxifen (Nolvadex). Each ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Herceptin, Casodex, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant

Timing May Be Key to Success of Surgery, Chemo for Early Breast Cancer

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – The sooner early stage breast cancer patients have surgery following their diagnosis, and chemotherapy after their surgery, the better their chances of survival, two new studies find. In one study, researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia analyzed data from more than 94,500 American women aged 66 and older. All were diagnosed with breast cancer between 1992 and 2009. The team, led by Dr. Richard Bleicher, found a 9 percent increased risk of death from all causes for each 30-day delay in the time from diagnosis to surgery. The link between time to surgery and risk of death from all causes was only statistically significant for patients with earlier stages of cancer, the researchers noted. In the study, delays seemed to affect prognosis for patients with stage 1 and stage 2 cancers, but not for those with stage 3 cancers. The findings were similar ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Herceptin, Casodex

Depression May Be Tied to Lower Breast Cancer Survival

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – Breast cancer patients with depression may have a much higher risk of death than those without the mental illness, a new study suggests. "Low mood and depression are understandable reactions to a breast cancer diagnosis. Clinicians generally know to look out for this, but these findings emphasize the need to ask patients with cancer about their mood and for women to know it's OK to ask for help," Elizabeth Davies, of the division of health and social care research and cancer studies at King's College London, said in a school news release. "It is important women feel they can talk about these feelings and do not feel guilty about difficulty coping or depression, which can be a natural response to cancer diagnosis," she added. Although this study found a link between depression and breast cancer survival, it's important to note that the research can't prove ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Lexapro, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Effexor, Prozac, Celexa, Provera, Paxil, Citalopram, Depo-Provera, Major Depressive Disorder, Sertraline, Pristiq, Amitriptyline, Fluoxetine, Effexor XR, Venlafaxine, Breast Cancer, Mirtazapine

Lumpectomy Plus Radiation May Beat Mastectomy for Early Breast Cancer

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – Women with early stage breast cancer may survive longer if they opt for the less-extensive surgery called lumpectomy, followed by radiation, rather than a mastectomy, a new study suggests. "I think these results offer women important information to discuss with their doctors when making a treatment decision for early stage breast cancer," said lead researcher Sabine Seisling, of the Netherlands Comprehensive Cancer Organization, in Utrecht. Mastectomy removes the entire the breast, while lumpectomy involves removing only the tumor with some surrounding tissue. Some studies have suggested that women with early stage breast cancer have a better five-year survival rate after lumpectomy. The new study, which included 37,000 Dutch women, found that the advantage may also extend to the longer term. Of nearly 22,000 patients who underwent lumpectomy plus radiation, ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Casodex, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant

Cooling Cap to Reduce Chemo-Linked Hair Loss OK'd

Posted 9 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9, 2015 – The Dignitana Cooling System cap has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help prevent hair loss in women undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer. A computer-controlled system circulates cooled liquid to the cap during chemotherapy. This is designed to constrict blood vessels in the scalp, limiting the amount of chemotherapy drugs that reach the hair follicles, the agency said in a news release. In clinical testing, more than two-thirds of women who wore the cap reported losing less than half of their hair. And the likelihood of chemotherapy drugs missing an isolated cluster of breast cancer cells in the scalp because of the cap was "extremely rare," the FDA said. But since the cap doesn't work with all chemotherapy drugs, any woman interested in using the product should speak with her doctor, the FDA advised. The most common side ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Alopecia, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Herceptin, Casodex, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant

Drugs May Protect the Heart During Chemotherapy

Posted 9 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9, 2015 – Two kinds of medications can prevent heart damage in breast cancer patients as they undergo chemotherapy, a new study suggests. Chemotherapy improves survival among women with early-stage breast cancer, but can dramatically increase their risk of heart failure, the researchers explained. This five-year study of 100 early-stage breast cancer patients in Canada found that two kinds of heart medicines – beta blockers and ACE inhibitors – seem to protect the heart during chemotherapy. "We think this is practice-changing. This will improve the safety of the cancer treatment that we provide," study co-investigator Edith Pituskin, an assistant professor in the Faculty of Nursing and Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Alberta in Canada, said in a university news release. The heart medications not only protect the heart, but may also improve ... Read more

Related support groups: Lisinopril, Provera, Metoprolol, Depo-Provera, Atenolol, Breast Cancer, Propranolol, Lupron, Heart Failure, Bystolic, Congestive Heart Failure, Carvedilol, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Ramipril, Arimidex, Bisoprolol, Coreg, Femara, Enalapril

Experts Issue Guidelines on Caring for Breast Cancer Survivors

Posted 7 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 7, 2015 – Battling breast cancer is tough, but survivors need care, too. Now, two major groups in cancer care have issued guidelines on the type of follow-up these patients require. The protocols, released jointly by the American Cancer Society and the American Society of Clinical Oncology, are "much needed for the 3.1 million breast cancer survivors who are alive in the United States today," said one expert, Dr. Eleonora Teplinsky, a medical oncologist with North Shore-LIJ Cancer Institute in Lake Success, N.Y. "Survivorship is defined as living with, through and beyond cancer, and each of these phases comes with unique concerns and challenges," she said. According to the new guidelines, regular monitoring of patients for the return of any cancer is one key recommendation. This monitoring should include evaluation – such as a detailed cancer history and physical ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Osteolytic Bone Metastases of Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer - Male, Tamoxifen Hexal, Soltamox, Tamone, Tamoxen, Genox, Nolvadex D, Tamofen, Tamosin, Emblon, Nolvadex

Researchers Focus on Risk Factors for Leukemia After Breast Cancer Treatment

Posted 7 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 7, 2015 – Researchers say they're zeroing in on factors that may increase the risk of leukemia after breast cancer treatment. The findings are a step forward in determining ways to prevent this complication in breast cancer survivors. While the breast cancer treatments target malignant cells, they can also affect healthy cells and could increase the risk of leukemia later, the researchers said. The scientists looked at 88 breast cancer survivors with treatment-related leukemia and found that many had a personal and family history of cancer, suggesting a genetic susceptibility to cancer. Also, 20 percent of the women had an inherited gene mutation that increases the risk of breast cancer, according to the study published Dec. 7 in the journal Cancer. "The findings justify a long-term, follow-up study of women with and without inherited breast cancer gene mutations who are ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Leukemia, Femara, Lupron Depot, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Herceptin, Casodex

Safe to Take Antidepressants With Tamoxifen: Study

Posted 4 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 4, 2015 – Breast cancer survivors who take antidepressants while on the cancer drug tamoxifen are not at increased risk for a return of their cancer, a new study finds. Tamoxifen is widely used to reduce the risk of breast cancer returning. But it can cause unpleasant side effects, including hot flashes and depression. As a result, nearly half of the 2.4 million breast cancer survivors in the United States take antidepressants, the study authors said. "Given that thousands of breast cancer survivors struggle with depression, sleep disturbance and other side effects while on tamoxifen, our study should help alleviate any concerns physicians have about prescribing antidepressants to their breast cancer patients to help improve their quality of life," Reina Haque, a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente Southern California, said in a Kaiser news release. Previous research ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Lexapro, Zoloft, Wellbutrin, Cymbalta, Effexor, Prozac, Celexa, Paxil, Citalopram, Trazodone, Major Depressive Disorder, Sertraline, Pristiq, Amitriptyline, Viibryd, Bupropion, Fluoxetine, Effexor XR, Venlafaxine

Risk of More Aggressive Early Breast Cancers Rises With Age, Study Finds

Posted 27 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 27, 2015 – While experts know the chances of finding a type of early stage breast cancer known as DCIS increase with age, a new study from Germany shows these cancers are more likely to be aggressive when discovered in older women. "DCIS detection rates increase with age, mostly due to a rise of DCIS high- and intermediate-grade [tumors]," said Dr. Stefanie Weigel, a researcher at University Hospital Muenster in Germany. These tumors, she said, are lesions that "carry a higher risk for transition to aggressive cancers than DCIS low-grade." DCIS, or ductal carcinoma in situ, is an early stage cancer that is potentially invasive. It is confined within the milk ducts and a common finding on mammography. Treating DCIS is controversial, because some cases may never progress and cause problems during a woman's lifetime. Weigel's team aimed to look at the link between age at ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Letrozole, Aromasin, Casodex, Exemestane, Eligard, Lupron Depot 3.75 mg

After Breast Cancer, Many in Appalachia Say No to Lifesaving Drugs

Posted 27 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 27, 2015 – About one-third of breast cancer survivors in the Appalachian region of the United States do not take potentially lifesaving drugs, even though their drugs are covered by insurance, a new study finds. The study included 428 breast cancer survivors in the Appalachian counties of Kentucky, Ohio, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. All of the women had Medicare Part D insurance that covers prescription medications. About 30 percent of the women did not follow through with their prescribed adjuvant hormone therapy, which reduces the risk of cancer recurrence, the University of Virginia researchers discovered. "Almost a third of the prescriptions for adjuvant hormone therapy were not filled, which is much, much higher compared to what we usually see in commercially insured populations," Rajesh Balkrishnan, of the department of public health sciences, said in a ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Femara, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Letrozole, Aromasin, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Exemestane, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Tamoxifen Hexal, Tamoxen, Genox, Teslac, Nolvadex D, Tamofen, Tamosin, Nolvadex

U.S. Oncologists Decry High Cost of Cancer Drugs

Posted 23 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 23, 2015 – Soaring costs for cancer drugs are hurting patient care in the United States, a group of top oncologists claim. "High cancer-drug prices are affecting the care of patients with cancer and our health care system," Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said in a Mayo news release. Tefferi and his colleagues made a number of recommendations on how to address the problem in a commentary published July 23 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices is one of the suggestions the team of 118 leading cancer experts offered as a possible solution. Along with their recommendations, the group also expressed support for a patient-based grassroots movement on change.org that is demanding action on the issue. "The average gross household income in the U.S. is about $52,000 per year. For an insured patient with ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Prostate Cancer, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Rituxan, Colorectal Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma

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