Will My Breast Cancer Come Back? Reducing the Risk of Breast Cancer Recurrence After Surgery
More than 215,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. For many of them, surgery to remove the tumor is just the first step in the battle against the disease, often followed by radiation and/or chemotherapy. After that, these women may need to decide with their doctor whether to have “adjuvant therapy”-medication to help prevent their cancer from coming back.
When a woman’s breast cancer does come back or spreads to other parts of the body, she may be at greater risk of dying from the disease. Women whose breast cancer is detected in the nearby lymph nodes at diagnosis and those who receive chemotherapy after surgery are considered to be at increased risk for breast cancer recurrence.
Postmenopausal women whose early-stage breast cancer is hormone-sensitive have a new option as their first hormone therapy following surgery. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved Femara (letrozole tablets) on December 28, 2005 for this type of use. This approval was based on a median of 24 months of treatment. The study is still...