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Joint pain linked to breast cancer drug not inflammatory arthritis or autoimmune disease
Date:11/7/2010

t know which participants were taking AIs and which were not.

"We did find 4 of 48 women with autoimmune disease 2 in each group -- that had previously been undiagnosed, but the frequency was similar both in women receiving AIs and those who were not receiving AIs," Shanmugam says. "We found that several patients in the control arm had a similar constellation of symptoms to those receiving AIs."

But Shanmugam and her team did not find any conclusive evidence from their tests of inflammatory arthritis in the women with breast cancer.

"Although our study helps to rule out inflammatory arthritis or autoimmune disease, we do not know why women using AIs have these musculoskeletal symptoms. Still, knowing that the drugs are not promoting inflammatory arthritis may be beneficial to a number of women," she concludes.

"It would be prudent to refer those experiencing joint pain to a rheumatologist to rule out a previously undiagnosed autoimmune disease, and so that we can help address the symptoms," Shanmugam says. "Since the syndrome doesn't appear to be related to inflammatory arthritis, women should be encouraged to stay on their medication so they can gain the full benefit from it."


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Contact: Karen Mallet
km463@georgetown.edu
215-514-9751
Georgetown University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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