(DailyDig.com) – Anastrozole, which was formerly approved for the treatment of breast cancer, is now available for use as a preventative measure. The drug has been shown in recent clinical trials to reduce the incidence of breast cancer in postmenopausal women at high or moderate risk for the disease by nearly 50 percent.
The National Health Service (NHS) in England estimates that anastrozole could be made available to approximately 289,000 women. It follows the November 6 approval of the drug by UK medicine regulators under the Medicines Repurposing Program, an innovative authorization process that utilizes old medications for new uses, in this case, cancer prevention as opposed to treatment.
Regarding all prescription medications, adverse effects and hazards exist. Dr. Vernon Coleman raises doubts as to why healthy women would be administered such a potent medication.
Coleman states that thousands of women could be administered anastrozole in an effort to prevent the development of breast cancer. However, little attention has been paid to the adverse effects that are well-known to be linked to this medication.
Prof. Peter Johnson, clinical director of the NHS, stated that a partial inventory of anastrozole-associated adverse effects is available. Obviously, not every woman will experience each of these side effects. The most prevalent symptoms resemble menopausal symptoms. The potential side effects encompass a range of physiological manifestations such as a reduction in their bone density, fatigue, dermatitis, headache, melancholy, osteoporosis, arthritis, vertigo, impaired vision, chest pain, headache, anxiety, and a rapid or sluggish pulse.
The largest challenge, according to Coleman, is administering this treatment to robust women. Physicians, in his opinion, ought to engage in dialogue regarding these concerns and caution against the notion that administering a potent medication to vast quantities of women who are healthy is inherently not an intelligent course of action.
Nevertheless, Dr. David Crosby, the director of cancer research in the United Kingdom, asserts that the repurposing of therapeutic medications that have been demonstrated to be safe for preventative purposes holds significant promise.
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