A study presented in Texas this month showed that anastrozole given for five years was safe not only safe to be given to high-risk postmenopausal women with breast cancer but that anastrozole prevented the recurrence of the disease. A total of 3864 postmenopausal women were enrolled who were considered high risk, 3/4 of them with 2 blood relatives with breast cancer before age 50 or a mother or sister who had breast cancer. Patients were randomized to either receive 1 mg anastrozole or a placebo. 10.9 Years later there was a 50% reduction in recurrence compared to those receiving placebo. This data is definitely better than that seen for tamoxifen.
Invasive breast cancer was also reduced and a reduction in intraductal cancer. Interestingly some other non-related cancers were also reduced. One is non-melanoma skin cancer. There were no increased fractures in the Anastrozole group and no significant difference in deaths or deaths from breast cancer.