Breast Cancer Treatment, Fertility Concerns
The intention of this study was to look at younger patients with a diagnosis of breast cancer, who have been identified as a at-risk population for poor initiation and continuation of Tamoxifen. And, interestingly, what we found is that while there were distinct factors associated with decisions regarding initiation and decisions to stop taking the drug, there was one common factor that united this group. That, actually, concerns about fertility at the time of diagnosis.
With this information, we hope, what we will now be able to accomplish is a targeted intervention that, actually, is in line with current guidelines that have been established by ASCO, ASR and the NCCN. That states that patients should be referred to a fertility specialist, who has an interest in fertility at the earliest possible time point in their diagnosis.
By doing this we hope that we can then improve upon the findings from our study, the initiation and continuation of Tamoxifen for young patients, who may be concerned that they wouldn't be able to achieve both of these events in their lives, being treated for cancer, but also some day having a baby. The study shows that young patients do have unique concerns and that we need to find a way to address these concerns so that we can help them to best survive their cancer.