(ABC News) – Mothers, sisters, wives. Breast cancer survivors take many forms.
For many, adjuvant treatments like Tamoxifen and Aromatase inhibitors have helped lessen the chances of recurrence.
The drugs are traditionally taken for five years following surgery and chemo.
Now a new study suggests that doctors may want to rethink this five-year limit and suggests that women take these drugs for even longer.
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Researchers at Oxford University studied more than 60,000 breast cancer survivors who received Tamoxifen. Doctors monitored these women for 20 years to see if the cancer would return.
What researchers found, even after five years, was that these womens’ risk of recurrence remained. Authors of this study are saying that a longer course of these adjuvant drugs may curb this risk.
The drugs, however, are not without their side effects. Some are potentially dangerous.
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So, for breast cancer survivors, making the choice to extend the use of these drugs or not may mean a conversation with their doctor.
It can be a critical step toward a cancer-free future.