Treatment approaches to reduce the risk of bone complications (metastasis) associated with breast cancer may be one step closer to becoming a reality. According to a study led by a team at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC), findings show that medication used to treat bone deterioration in post-menopausal women may also slow skeletal metastasis caused from breast cancer.
This study, published in this month’s issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI), is among the first to link bisphosphonate (a common osteoporosis medication) use with improved survival in women with breast cancer. “Skeletal metastases develop in up to 70 percent of women who die from breast cancer,” says study co-lead author, Dr. Richard Kremer, director of the Bone and Mineral Unit at the MUHC and a professor in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. “This causes considerable suffering and is life-threatening. Preventing this could translate into saving a significant number of lives.”
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