Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Hormone replacement therapy may improve breast cancer detection and survival rate

13.09.2002


OHSU study suggests that HRT may act on cancer cells to produce less aggressive tumors



A study of nearly 300 breast cancer patients at Oregon Health & Science University found that women who use hormone replacement therapy (HRT) have less aggressive tumors and are more likely to be diagnosed through mammograms than other methods. Also, HRT users with breast cancer had significantly better survival rates than non-HRT users. The study is published in the September issue of the journal The Archives of Surgery.

Because hormones increase the density of breast tissue, researchers have suspected that HRT use would make it more difficult to detect tumors on mammograms. As a result, it was suspected that tumors in patients who have received HRT might not be detected until they were larger and more advanced. However, of 144 study patients using HRT, 84 had their tumors detected by mammogram, while 60 were detected by other methods. Comparatively, of 148 non-HRT users, 63 had their tumors detected by mammogram, while 85 were detected by palpation (feeling for lumps).


Even more surprising, among the women whose tumors were detected by mammogram, HRT users had a 100 percent survival rate, while nonusers had only an 87 percent survival rate after six years. The study found significantly fewer cases of invasive tumors among HRT users, and higher incidences of T1 lesions, stage 1 tumors and node-negative tumors--all signs of a less aggressive disease.

"From this data it appears that HRT use had only beneficial effects on breast cancer detection and outcomes, with no visible negative effects," said Rodney F. Pommier, M.D., associate professor of surgery in the OHSU School of Medicine and principal investigator of the study.

Hormone replacement therapy has come under fire in recent months after several studies indicated that long-term use of combination hormone therapies can lead to slight increases in heart disease, stroke and breast cancer among patients.

"Every woman should talk to her physician about her own risks and benefits of taking hormones," said Pommier. "But this data needs to be taken into consideration as well. If we know that HRT can improve survival rates by producing a less aggressive breast cancer, then it’s possible that by withholding HRT for the purpose of possibly preventing a few cases of breast cancer, you’re going to have a higher death rate among women who were going to get the disease anyway."

The Women’s Health Initiative last July canceled its clinical trial on the use of combination estrogen-progestin HRT due to higher reports of associated illnesses. However, there has not been the same association with estrogen-only HRT. The OHSU study, which was a retrospective analysis of patients already diagnosed with breast cancer, included patients who took any form of HRT.

"This study opens an entirely new direction for future research of breast cancers. When we learn how HRT favorably affects the biology of tumors we can then use that information in a therapeutic fashion to improve the outcome of women with breast cancer," said study co-investigator SuEllen Toth-Fejel, Ph.D., research assistant professor of surgery in the OHSU School of Medicine, who led the laboratory work on the project.

Martin Munguia | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ohsu.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Researchers identify new way to unmask melanoma cells to the immune system
17.01.2018 | Duke University Medical Center

nachricht Study advances gene therapy for glaucoma
17.01.2018 | University of Wisconsin-Madison

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

Im Focus: A thermometer for the oceans

Measurement of noble gases in Antarctic ice cores

The oceans are the largest global heat reservoir. As a result of man-made global warming, the temperature in the global climate system increases; around 90% of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Polymers Based on Boron?

18.01.2018 | Life Sciences

Bioengineered soft microfibers improve T-cell production

18.01.2018 | Life Sciences

World’s oldest known oxygen oasis discovered

18.01.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>