Ovarian suppression/ablation in premenopausal ER-positive breast cancer patients. Issues and recommendations.
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Endocrine therapy remains pivotal in the adjuvant therapy of premenopausal women with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. Ovarian ablation, used alone, is effective in delaying recurrence and increasing survival in such women. When added to chemotherapy, it is less clear that this technique is effective, perhaps because of the endocrine ablative effect of chemotherapy. Adjuvant trials comparing ovarian ablation with or without tamoxifen to CMF-type chemotherapy (cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, fluorouracil) suggest that the endocrine therapy is equivalent to or better than this chemotherapy in women whose tumors express estrogen and/or progesterone receptors. Endocrine therapy with ovarian ablation, tamoxifen, or the combination is also useful in the metastatic setting in premenopausal women.
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