Nonhormonal alternatives for the management of early menopause in younger women with breast cancer.

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Abstract

Current medical practice recommends the use of alternatives to estrogen-replacement therapy for the treatment of menopausal sequelae in younger women with breast cancer, although this clinical recommendation is undergoing reappraisal. Until prospective randomized studies addressing hormone use in this population are available, estrogen use in breast cancer patients will remain controversial. Because estrogen-replacement therapy is not the standard of practice and there is limited information available on nonestrogen therapies, women with breast cancer who are menopausal may not be prescribed or counseled about nonestrogen options. The efficacy, safety, and extent of use of most nonestrogen treatment modalities (other hormonal preparations, nonhormonal drugs, homeopathic preparations, and non-drug treatments) are not well documented and, unlike estrogen, many are selective in their benefit and do not share estrogen's universal impact. The use of several nonestrogen approaches for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis has been promising. Traditional recommendations to maintain skeletal integrity, such as weight-bearing exercise; a diet rich in calcium and limited in caffeine, alcohol, and protein; avoidance of smoking; and measures to minimize trauma have been expanded to include the use or investigation of drugs (either alone or in combination). These drugs include progestins, vitamin D metabolites, injectable and intranasal synthetic salmon calcitonin, bisphosphonates, sodium fluoride, parathyroid hormone, growth factors, tamoxifen, etc. Strict control of the known risk factors, such as smoking, dyslipidemia, and hypertension as well as exercise, weight control, and the use of tamoxifen, are employed for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular complications.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-167
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the National Cancer Institute. Monographs
Issue number16
StatePublished - 1994

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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