Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Extending duration of adjuvant tamoxifen treatment to 10 years reduced risk for late breast cancer recurrence, improved survival

Date:
December 5, 2012
Source:
CRRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium
Summary:
Ten years of adjuvant treatment with tamoxifen provided women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer greater protection against late recurrence and death from breast cancer compared with the current standard of five years of tamoxifen, according to a new study.

Ten years of adjuvant treatment with tamoxifen provided women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer greater protection against late recurrence and death from breast cancer compared with the current standard of five years of tamoxifen, according to the international ATLAS (Adjuvant Tamoxifen -- Longer Against Shorter) study.

"Five years of adjuvant tamoxifen is already an excellent treatment that substantially reduces the 15-year risk for recurrence and death from estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer, but ATLAS now shows that 10 years of tamoxifen is even more effective," said Christina Davies, M.D., a coordinator in the Clinical Trial Service Unit at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom.

She presented the results at the 2012 CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, held in San Antonio Dec. 4-8. The results were simultaneously published in the Lancet.

"The main additional benefit from continuing tamoxifen treatment is to reduce breast cancer mortality during the second decade after diagnosis," Davies said. "We already knew that five years of tamoxifen reduces breast cancer mortality in this late period by almost a third in comparison with no tamoxifen. We now know that 10 years of tamoxifen is even better, approximately halving breast cancer mortality during the second decade after diagnosis."

Researchers enrolled 6,846 women with ER-positive breast cancer between 1996 and 2005. Half had node-positive disease. All the women had been using tamoxifen for five years, and the researchers randomly assigned them to continue treatment for another five years or to stop immediately.

After about eight years of follow-up, the researchers observed 1,328 breast cancer recurrences and 728 deaths after recurrence. The treatment allocation had little effect on either recurrence rates or death rates during the period five to nine years after diagnosis. However, during the second decade following diagnosis, the women who continued tamoxifen treatment had a 25 percent lower recurrence rate and a 29 percent lower breast cancer mortality rate compared with women who stopped after five years.

Risk for death from breast cancer five to 14 years after diagnosis was 12.2 percent among those who continued use versus 15 percent among those who stopped -- an absolute gain of 2.8 percent. The researchers observed the greatest benefit during 10 to 14 years after diagnosis.

Davies noted that continuing tamoxifen use can increase side effects, with endometrial cancer being the most life-threatening. Because endometrial cancer is generally curable, the cumulative risk for death between five and 14 years after diagnosis was 0.4 percent versus 0.2 percent. Because this risk is heavily outweighed by the reduction in breast cancer deaths, overall mortality was significantly reduced by longer treatment. In premenopausal women, for whom tamoxifen is often the endocrine treatment of choice, there was no apparent excess of endometrial cancer.

"Many women with ER-positive breast cancer take tamoxifen, or some other adjuvant endocrine treatment, but the current recommendation is to stop after five years," said Davies. "ATLAS showed that protection against breast cancer recurrence and death is greater with 10 years than with five years of tamoxifen use. Women and their doctors should be aware of this evidence when deciding how long to continue tamoxifen, or any other endocrine treatment."

The study was funded by Cancer Research U.K., the U.K. Medical Research Council, AstraZeneca, the United States Army and the European Union.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by CRRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Christina Davies et al. Long-term effects of continuing adjuvant tamoxifen to 10 years versus stopping at 5 years after diagnosis of oestrogen receptor-positive breast cancer: ATLAS, a randomised trial. The Lancet, 2012 DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(12)61963-1

Cite This Page:

CRRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. "Extending duration of adjuvant tamoxifen treatment to 10 years reduced risk for late breast cancer recurrence, improved survival." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 December 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090917.htm>.
CRRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. (2012, December 5). Extending duration of adjuvant tamoxifen treatment to 10 years reduced risk for late breast cancer recurrence, improved survival. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090917.htm
CRRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. "Extending duration of adjuvant tamoxifen treatment to 10 years reduced risk for late breast cancer recurrence, improved survival." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121205090917.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins