News archive 2008
HRT increases risk of breast cancer recurrence27 Mar 2008, PR 57/08
Professor Lars Holmberg from the Division of Cancer Studies at King’s College London has led a study highlighting that the Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) increases disease recurrence in breast cancer survivors.
Previous studies have shown that HRT increases breast cancer incidence in healthy women, but its impact on breast cancer survivors has remained obscure. Observational studies and one small randomized trial had suggested that HRT had no effect or even might reduce recurrence. However, two-year follow-up data from the randomized HABITS (Hormonal Replacement after Breast Cancer — Is It Safe?) trial indicated that survivors who took HRT were more likely to suffer disease recurrence than those who did not take HRT.
Professor Holmberg comments: ‘The results of the HABITS trial indicate a substantial risk for a new breast cancer event among breast cancer survivors using HRT. The risk elevation is in line with the evidence from observational studies and randomized trials that HRT increases the risk of breast cancer in healthy women’.
Breast cancer rates
Professor Holmberg and his colleagues in the Breast International Group examined the breast cancer rates for women in the HABITS trial after four years. At the time of this analysis, 39 (17.6 percent) of the 221 women in the HRT treatment arm had developed breast cancer recurrence or a new breast cancer malignancy, compared with 17 (7.7 per cent) of 221 women in the control arm. The estimated five year cumulative rate for disease recurrence was 22.2 per cent for the HRT arm and 9.5 per cent in the control arm, for an absolute increase in risk of 14.2 per cent. The research was published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
Professor Holmberg explains: ‘While earlier clinical patient series gave us hope that menopausal symptoms in breast cancer survivors could be safely treated with hormonal replacement therapy, our randomised study now shows that frequently used types of hormone combinations infers a substantially increased risk of a new breast cancer event’.
Notes to editors
The Journal of the National Cancer Institute
The Journal of the National Cancer Institute is published by Oxford University Press and is not affiliated with the National Cancer Institute. Attribution to the Journal of the National Cancer Institute is requested in all news coverage. Visit the Journal online at http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/
• Article: Holmberg L, Iversen O-E, Rudenstam CM, Hammar M, Kumpulainen E, et al. Increased Risk of Recurrence After Hormone Replacement Therapy in Breast Cancer Survivors. J Natl Cancer Inst 2008; 100:475-482
• Editorial: Pritchard KI. Should Observational Studies Be a Thing of the Past? J Natl Cancer Inst 2008; 100:451-452
• Article: Lars Holmberg, email@example.com, +44 (0)20 7188 7904
• Editorial: Natalie Chung-Sayers, firstname.lastname@example.org, (416) 480-6100 ext. 2253
King’s College London
King’s College London is one of the top 25 universities in the world (Times Higher 2007) and the fourth oldest in England. A research-led university based in the heart of London, King’s has 19,700 students from more than 140 countries, and 5,400 employees. King’s has an outstanding reputation for providing world-class teaching and cutting-edge research. The College is in the top group of UK universities for research earnings and has an annual income of approximately £400 million. An investment of £500 million has been made in the redevelopment of its estate.
King’s has a particularly distinguished reputation in the humanities, law, social sciences, the health sciences, natural sciences and engineering, and has played a major role in many of the advances that have shaped modern life, such as the discovery of the structure of DNA. It is the largest centre for the education of healthcare professionals in Europe and is home to five Medical Research Council Centres - more than any other university.
Kate Moore, Public Relations Officer (Health Schools)
Public Relations Department
Tel: 0207 848 4334
Review of the King's year
King’s shows way for London Leaders
2008 RAE results
£1.5m to study symmetries of the universe
Honorary recognition for King’s
First Oral Bacteria Database
Students tackle rubbish dump poverty
Business Plan Competition winners announced
Sir Arthur C Clarke 1917-2008
'Virtual Water' Innovator wins major prize
This information is provided by the Public Relations Department
Tel: 020-7848 3202 Fax: 020-7848 3739 Email: email@example.com