• Other Treatments for Breast Cancer

    Targeted Therapy

    Targeted therapy uses medications to seek out cancer cells and destroy them. With breast cancer, medications such as trastuzumab, bevacizumab, or lapatinib modify the body's immune system to treat cancer.
    A specific oncogene, human epidural growth factor receptor 2 (HER2/neu), is associated with nearly 30% of breast cancers. These cancers also have a tendency to be more aggressive. HER2 enhances the development and progression of certain types of breast cancer. Targeted therapy inhibits specific characteristics of cancer cells, such as blood vessel growth, which the tumor needs in order to grow.
    Targeted therapies are used for early- and late-stage breast cancers

    Side Effects and Management

    Because these medications target cancer cells specifically, the side effects are not as severe as with chemotherapy drugs. Side effects may include:
    Your doctor will talk to you about the risks and benefits of targeted therapy treatment. A variety of treatments are available to help manage side effects including medication, lifestyle changes, and alternative treatments. The earlier the side effects are addressed, the more likely they will be controlled with a minimum of discomfort.

    References

    Breast cancer. American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/acs/groups/cid/documents/webcontent/003090-pdf.pdf. Accessed November 2, 2015.

    Breast cancer. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gynecology-and-obstetrics/breast-disorders/breast-cancer. Updated September 2013. Accessed November 2, 2015.

    Breast cancer in women. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113654/Breast-cancer-in-women. Updated September 14, 2016. Accessed October 3, 2016.

    Hackshaw A. Luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) agonists in the treatment of breast cancer. Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2009;10(16):2633-2639.

    HER2 inhibitors for breast cancer. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T901191/HER2-inhibitors-for-breast-cancer. Updated January 12, 2015. Accessed October 3, 2016.

    Treatment option overview. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/patient/breast-treatment-pdq#section/%5F185. Updated October 22, 2015. Accessed November 2, 2015.

    11/16/2009 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113654/Breast-cancer-in-women: Goel S, Sharma R. Hamilton A, Beith J. LHRH agonists for adjuvant therapy of early breast cancer in premenopausal women. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009;(4):CD004562.

    2/12/2010 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113654/Breast-cancer-in-women: Kelly CM, Juurlink DN, Gomes T, et al. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and breast cancer mortality in women receiving tamoxifen: a population based cohort study. BMJ. 2010;340:c693.

    2/19/2010 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113654/Breast-cancer-in-women: Desmarais JE, Looper KJ. Interactions between tamoxifen and antidepressants via cytochrome P450 2D6. J Clin Psychiatry. 2009;70(12):1688-1697.

    Revision Information

  • LiveWell personal health survey

    How healthy are you really? Find out – free.Learn more

    It's time to stop guessing. If you want to make some changes but just aren't sure how, the free personal health survey from LiveWell is a great place to start.

  • HeartSHAPE Spotlight

    At risk for a heart attack? Learn more

    Fight heart disease and prevent heart attacks. HeartSHAPE® is a painless, non-invasive test that checks pictures of your heart for early-stage coronary disease.

  • Calories and Energy Needs

    Calorie NeedsLearn more

    How many calories do you need to eat each day to maintain your weight and fuel your physical activity? Enter a few of your stats into this calculator to find out.

  • Ideal Body Weight

    Ideal Body WeightLearn more

    Using body mass index as a reference, this calculator determines your ideal body weight range. All you need to do is enter your height.

  • Body Mass Index

    Body Mass IndexLearn more

    This tool considers your height and weight to assess your weight status.


  • Can we help answer your questions?

    Wellmont Nurse Connection is your resource for valuable health information any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Speak to a Nurse any time, day or night, at (423) 723-6877 or toll-free at 1-877-230-NURSE.