Drug prevents breast cancer for over 10 years, findings reveal
SEE ALSO :Does wearing a bra cause breast cancer?“The large 61 per cent reduction in breast cancer incidence in the first five years has been maintained in subsequent follow-up to 12 years,” the study reads. “The significant 36 per cent reduction during post-treatment follow-up was not significantly smaller than during treatment.” The study, led by Prof Jack Cuzick from Centre for Cancer Prevention, Wolfson Institute of Prevention Medicine, Queen Mary University London, UK, argues that even with the reduced prevention, the chances are still higher compared to tamoxifen, another drug with similar properties. Tamoxifen’s efficacy on prevention stands at 29 per cent, and lasts for up to 20 years. The study recruited 3,864 women between 2002 and 2012, where 1,920 were put on 1mg of anastrozole daily for five years while 1,944 were put on placebo. “After a median follow-up of 131 months, a 49 per cent reduction in breast cancer was observed for anastrozole,” reads the study. “The reduction was larger in the first five years but still significant after five years and not significantly different from the first five years.” The study notes that the reduction with anastrozole was primarily seen in oestrogen receptor-positive cancers, which suggests that the effect on mortality will be smaller than that for incidence. “The effects were greatest for oestrogen receptor-positive tumours, but an unexpected and non-significant 27 per cent reduction was also seen for receptor-negative cancers, which will need further follow-up to validate,” explained the study. About 70 per cent of breast cancers are Oestrogen Receptive (ER), which means the tumours respond to hormonal therapies that target production of oestrogen hormone. Breast cancer is the leading type among women in Kenya, with 5,985 cases in 2018 and 2,553 deaths in 2018, according to Globocan statistics, compiled by the World Health Organisation and the International Agency for Research on Cancer.
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