ASCO: Anastrozole Increases Bone Loss in Cancer Patients

After five years, anastrozole has more significant effects on bone mineral density than tamoxifen

MONDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women with invasive breast cancer who take the aromatase inhibitor anastrozole (Arimidex) may have more bone loss than those who take tamoxifen, according to research presented at the 42nd annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Atlanta.

Robert E. Coleman, M.D., of Weston Park Hospital in Sheffield, U.K., and colleagues compared bone mineral density in the lumbar spine and hip of 81 postmenopausal patients who took anastrozole for five years and 86 postmenopausal patients who took tamoxifen for five years.

The researchers found that the anastrozole group had a mean bone mineral density decrease of 6.1 percent in the lumbar spine and 7.2 percent in the hip compared to 2.8 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively, in the tamoxifen group.

"Although no patients with normal bone mineral density at baseline had become osteoporotic at five years, regular monitoring of bone mineral density and bone protection strategies are likely to be required in patients receiving anastrozole in the presence of pre-existing osteopenia," the authors conclude.

Abstract (#511)

Rick Ansorge

Rick Ansorge

Published on June 05, 2006

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