Tags: zometa | breast | cancer | bone | drug | study | mayo

Bone Drug Helps Breast-Cancer Patients

Thursday, 15 Dec 2011 05:09 PM


The bone drug Zometa lowers the risk of women dying from breast cancer, according to a new study.

After seven years of following patients taking the drug, researchers found that women had a 37 percent lower risk of dying.

Dr. Michael Gnant, of Austria's Medical University of Vienna, said the results are impressive because the Zometa treatments were minimal — two each year for three years. Gnant presented the results during the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.
Several specialists commented on the findings and said the drug should be prescribed to all breast-cancer patients receiving treatments that reduce their homone production and lead them into early menopause.
"It's a new standard of care," said Dr. James Ingle, of the Mayo Clinic.
Gnant said Zometa, made by the Swiss company Novartis AG, prevented a recurrence of cancer in the women studied.
It has previously been used in non-cancer patients to strengthen bones.
Researchers theorize cancer cells are not as easily spread because of improved bone density caused by Zometa. The study partially was paid for by Novartis AG, and Gnant is a consultant for the company.
But other studies were presented during the symposium that bolstered Zometa's efficacy, said Dr. Peter Ravdin, director of the breast-cancer program at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio.

© HealthDay

 
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Thursday, 15 Dec 2011 05:09 PM
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