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New Research Shows Antidepressants May Thwart Breast Cancer Treatment
Date:5/30/2009

Popular antidepressants taken with tamoxifen can increase the risk of breast cancer recurrence

PHILADELPHIA, May 30 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new study found that taking tamoxifen with certain antidepressants more than doubled the risk of breast cancer recurrence in women taking both medications. The antidepressants inhibit an enzyme, CYP2D6, which helps tamoxifen work effectively.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090530/DC24767LOGO)

The study was conducted by researchers from Medco and the Indiana University School of Medicine and presented Saturday at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting in Orlando.

Approximately 500,000 U.S. women take tamoxifen, a medicine that blocks the effects of estrogen in breast tissue. Estrogen can make certain types of breast cancer (hormone-receptor-positive breast cancers) grow. About 30 percent of women taking tamoxifen also are taking an antidepressant to treat depression and/or to ease hot flashes, a common side effect of tamoxifen. "With more than 100,000 women potentially affected, these data represent a significant health finding," asserts Dr. Marisa Weiss, president and founder of Breastcancer.org and a breast oncologist at Lankenau Hospital in the Philadelphia area.

Preliminary, limited information from another study conducted by researchers from the Netherlands appears to offer conflicting results. The Dutch study suggests taking tamoxifen with specific antidepressants doesn't affect breast cancer recurrence rates.

"We don't want to dismiss the findings of the Dutch study; however, from what we've learned, there were fewer women in the Dutch study taking antidepressants in combination w
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SOURCE Breastcancer.org
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