Adjuvant therapy is used in addition to other types of therapies in order to kill any cancer cells that may have grown, even if the spread cannot be detected by laboratory tests. Adjuvant therapy for breast cancer may increase your chances of long-term survival by preventing it from reoccurring. The main purpose of adjuvant therapy is to kill any cancer cells that may have spread or remain, this treatment usually uses substances that travel through the bloodstream, reaching and affecting cancer cells all over the body. Adjuvant therapy for breast cancer involves adjuvant chemotherapy or adjuvant hormone therapy, either alone or together.
Adjuvant chemotherapy is the use of medications to kill cancer cells. It has been shown through scientific research that using chemotherapy as adjuvant therapy for early stage breast cancer helps to prevent the original cancer from returning. Adjuvant chemotherapy is usually a combination of anticancer medications. The results have shown to be more effective than a single anticancer drug.
Adjuvant hormone therapy deprives cancer cells of the female hormone estrogen, which can cause some breast cancer cells to grow. Most often, adjuvant hormone therapy is treatment with the drug tamoxifen. Research has shown that when medications such as these are used as adjuvant therapy in the early stages of breast cancer, it helps to prevent the original cancer from returning and also helps to prevent the development of new cancer cells in the other breast.
Another medication used in adjuvant therapy is Aromasin (exemestane). Aromasin is another anti-estrogen, or estrogen-suppressing medication, taken as a pill, used in adjuvant therapy. Studies show that women who switched to Aromasin after two or three years of tamoxifen had significantly lowered risks of recurrence than those who took a full five years of tamoxifen. This medication helps lower the woman’s risks of breast cancer recurrence, and improves one’s chance of survival
Adjuvant therapy is a very complicated topic but if you know that you have breast cancer you should discuss it with your doctor. Your doctor will be able to explain it further and determine if it is the right treatment for you. You can also find more information on the topic by using your online resources. Remember if treated quickly and properly breast cancer can be controlled. This disease does not have to be a deadly disease.