Femara Cuts Breast Cancer Repetition Risk

Armen Hareyan's picture

Women taking Femara have lower risk for breast cancer repetition.

Women surviving breast cancer by taking surgery, radiation and chemotherapy are facing the risk for cancer repetition after a few years after finishing treatment.

It is already proved that cancer repetition risk depends upon estrogen hormone levels. Women are now taking tamoxifen to reduce estrogen levels, but it is effective only within 5 years. During the first years it cuts the repetition risk by 50%. Later it becomes less effective.


Another type of drug called aromatase inhibitor, such as Femara, showed to be more effective in cutting the risk for breast cancer repetition.

Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital conducted a study of 1500 women who had stopped taking tamoxifen from 1 to 5 years. After the pause they started taking aromatase inhibitor letrozole. Another 800 women didn't take any treatment after the pause.

Letrozole treatment decreased cancer repetition risk by 63%, cancer spreading risk by 61%, and cancer appearance risk in previously non-affected tissues by 80%.

"The risk that hormone-dependent breast cancer will recur continues indefinitely, and our results imply that aromatase inhibition is effective whenever initiated," said Dr. Paul Goss from Harvard Medical School.