OSTEOPOROSIS MEDS AND BREAST CANCER
ANCHOR LEAD: IS IT POSSIBLE FOR A BONE BUILDING MEDICATION TO STAVE OFF BREAST CANCER? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Bisphosphonates are a class of medications used to treat osteoporosis, and have also found a place in preventing fractures in people whose cancers spread to their bones. Now a number of studies have suggested that these medications may actually prevent cancer spread or metastasis, especially in breast cancer. Ben Park, a breast cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, comments.
PARK: There’s some evidence in some trials that these medicines may even affect the overall outcome of patients with cancer, meaning their overall survival. Whether that’s true or not is an area of active research. If you look across the multitude of studies some have been positive for this and some have been equivocal or negative and so we don’t really know the answer to this, but it’s an intriguing thought- do these even have some anticancer effects? Do they actually even somehow cause the cancers not to grow or even kill the cancers? :28
Park says for right now, he wouldn’t use bisphosphonates with the sole idea of preventing recurrence. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.