(HealthDay News) — The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that women at increased risk of breast cancer be prescribed tamoxifen or raloxifene for risk reduction, according to a final Recommendation Statement published online Sept. 24 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
To update the 2002 USPSTF recommendations, researchers from the USPSTF reviewed evidence on the effectiveness, adverse effects, and subgroup variations of medication to reduce the risk of breast cancer. They specifically focused on the selective estrogen receptor modulators tamoxifen and raloxifene, and reviewed a meta-analysis of placebo-controlled trials to assess the benefits and harms of these medications.
Based on the findings, the researchers recommend that clinicians engage in shared, informed, decision making for women aged 35 years or older, at risk of breast cancer. For women with low risk for adverse medication effects who are at increased risk of breast cancer, clinicians should offer to prescribe risk-reducing medications (Grade B recommendation). For women who are not at increased risk of breast cancer, the USPSTF recommends against routine use of medications such as tamoxifen and raloxifene (Grade D recommendation).
“While these medications have some significant side effects, it is important that clinicians and women at high risk for breast cancer be aware of the options these drugs offer,” USPSTF member Wanda Nicholson, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., said in a statement.