Navigation Links
Drop in breast cancer rates directly tied to reduced hormone therapy
Date:11/30/2010

In a new UCSF study of more than 2 million mammogram screenings performed on nearly 700,000 women in the United States, scientists for the first time show a direct link between reduced hormone therapy and declines in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) as well as invasive breast cancer. The researchers saw such a striking decrease, they believe they also have uncovered indirect evidence that hormones promote breast tumor growth.

The declines occurred in the age groups that most widely embraced then abandoned hormone therapy.

For nearly a decade, postmenopausal women have been strongly advised to refrain from long-term hormone therapy or to use the lowest dose possible for the shortest time to relieve hot flashes and night sweats. Numerous studies have suggested that women taking a combination of progestin and estrogen faced a higher risk of breast cancer and other potential health hazards.

The new findings suggest that hormones helped promote breast tumor growth of preexisting, clinically latent hormone-dependent cancers, not only increasing the incidents of invasive cancer, but also the risk of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).

"We show that the incidence of breast cancer decreases if you take the hormones away,'' said senior author Karla Kerlikowske, MD. "The fact that we're continuing to see a decrease in invasive cancer means that the effects of stopping the hormones may be long-lasting.''

The study has been published online by the "Journal of Clinical Oncology.'' http://jco.ascopubs.org/content/early/2010/11/08/JCO.2010.29.5121.full.pdf+html?sid=b3f9dc48-1229-4ad7-877f-51e633bf1453

The use of hormone therapy surged in the 1980s and '90s an estimated six million American women found that the medications alleviated postmenopausal symptoms. But at the same time, there was a steady increase in the rate of breast cancer.

In mid-2002, following a landmark report of the Women's Health Initiative indicating that the risks of estrogen plus progestin therapy outweighed its benefits, hormone therapy fell into widespread disfavor. Women by the millions gave up hormones cold turkey or incrementally.

In the new UCSF study, scientists reviewed 2,071,814 screening mammography examinations performed between January 1997 and December 2008 on nearly 700,000 women between the ages of 40 and 79 as part of routine regular screening mammography.

They uncovered a clear pattern: women 50 to 69 years old had the highest level of hormone usage and showed the biggest reduction in invasive breast cancer when they stopped, from 40 cancers per 10,000 mammograms in 2002 to 31 cases in 2005, 35 cancers in 2006. Likewise, rates of DCIS markedly dropped in the same age group after hormone therapy ended.

There was a parallel drop in cancer among women older than age 70.

Strikingly, the scientists found that among women 40 to 49 years old, who were less likely to have been on hormone therapy, breast cancer rates did not change over the course of the decade studied.

The results corroborate previous declines in invasive cancer between 2000 and 2003 reported for women aged 50 to 69 by the same group of scientists as well as other researchers. To the authors, the statistics offer convincing evidence that hormone therapy cessation reduces breast cancer risk.

The scientists say major questions remain unanswered: does a halt in hormone therapy correlate to a delay in the clinical detection of tumors, leading to a short-term reduction in cancer rates, but not a long-term drop? Do the effects apply long term for all tumors influenced by hormone therapy?

"The study supports the idea that by giving the hormones we were promoting tumor growths by giving the hormones,'' said Kerlikowske, professor of medicine, and epidemiology and biostatistics at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, and co-director of the Women Veteran's Comprehensive Health Center at SFVAMC. "When the promoter is taken away, the incidence of breast cancer decreases.''

While scientists continue to investigate the relationship between hormones and cancer, Kerlikowske said that using hormone therapy on a short term basis is "probably OK. But long term, it is not OK.''


'/>"/>

Contact: Elizabeth Fernandez
EFernandez@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-502-6397
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Sporadic breast cancers start with ineffective DNA repair systems, Pitt researchers find
2. Women With Breast Cancer History Should Consider MRI: Study
3. Women with personal history of breast cancer should be screened with MRI
4. Women Taking Certain Epilepsy Drugs Can Safely Breast-Feed, Study Suggests
5. Discovery halts breast cancer stem cells
6. Targeted breast ultrasound plays key role in evaluating breast abnormalities in women younger than 40
7. Cough Syrup Might Help With Dosing of Breast Cancer Drug
8. I-SPY 2 study speeds up treatment for breast cancer
9. Cough medicine could help doctors identify how breast cancer patients metabolize tamoxifen
10. Scientists identify potential new target for treating triple negative breast cancer
11. Erythropoietin counteracts breast cancer treatment with herceptin
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... delivery system that we intend to develop to enable prevention of a major ... to severe hearing loss, especially in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... HMP , ... recipient of a 2017 Folio Magazine Eddie Digital Award for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ ... on October 11, 2017. , The annual award competition recognizes editorial and design excellence ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... On Saturday, October 21, the Health & Wellness ... Moonlight to raise money for the American Heart Association Heart Walk. Teams of up ... work together to keep their treadmills moving for 5 hours. Treadmills will start at ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Health ... interactive health literacy software tool, and the Cancer Patient Education Network (CPEN), an ... education, today announce a new strategic alliance. , As CPEN’s strategic partner, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... wound care advancements to physician colleagues, skilled nursing facility medical directors and other ... Treacherous Waters of Wound Care." , "At many of these conferences we get ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... 2017  EpiVax, Inc., a leader in the ... today announced the launch of EpiVax Oncology Inc., ... therapeutic cancer vaccines. EpiVax has provided $500,000 in ... enabling technologies to the new precision immunotherapy venture. ... Oncology as Chief Executive Officer. Gad brings over ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... Inc., a venture-backed medical device company developing a non-invasive, robotically assisted, platform therapy that uses ... today:   ... Jim ... Tom Tefft ... Veteran medical device executive Josh Stopek , PhD, who has led R&D and business ...
(Date:9/13/2017)... ATLANTA , Sept. 13, 2017   OrthoAtlanta ... to the Atlanta Football Host Committee (AFHC) for the 2018 ... Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in ... part of the AFHC "I,m In" campaign, participating in many ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: