Estrogen brings breast cancer back

Posted by Puteri | 3/11/2008 01:02:00 PM | 0 comments »

March 7, 2008 -- Breast cancer survivors whose bodies make the least estrogen have the lowest chance of breast cancer recurrence, a long-term study shows.

Estrogen levels -- measured soon after initial breast cancer treatment -- were twice as high in women whose breast cancer returned as in those whose breast cancer did not come back.

Nearly all the women in the study had already gone through menopause, and most took the estrogen-blocking drug tamoxifen. So where did their estrogen come from? Fat tissue, says study investigator Cheryl Rock, PhD, RD, a professor in the cancer prevention program at the University of California, San Diego.

"Fat tissue is the primary non-ovarian site for estrogen production in the body," Rock tells WebMD. "And what makes this worse is that the elevated insulin levels associated with obesity are suppressing sex-hormone binding globulin [which removes free estrogen from the circulation]."

All this is good news for breast cancer survivors, Rock says. It means that by exercising and losing weight, they can cut their risk of cancer recurrence.

Full story here.

One of my good friends who had a lumpectomy to remove a cancerous lump in one of her breasts is now undergoing an estrogen suppression therapy. I think she is taking medication to suppress the estrogen in her body because her cancer is estrogen induced .. I think that is the way it is described.

I did not know before this, that estrogen is found in the fat tissue. Now that we know that those whose bodies make the least estrogen have the least likely chance of the cancer recurring, then it is a good idea for those who can lose some weight to lose that weight!

I should call my friend and let her know about what I'd just read, if she doesn't know about it already!