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Cancer. 2005 Aug 1;104(3):443-56.

Clinical management of osteoporosis in women with a history of breast carcinoma.

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  • 1Breast Cancer Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA. vanpoznc@mskcc.org


Osteoporosis is a skeletal disorder that is characterized by low bone mass and compromised bone strength. Fractures are the clinically important consequence of osteoporosis and result not only in disability but also in excess mortality. Women who have a history of breast carcinoma may represent a unique population for whom screening and treatment for osteoporosis should be modified. A review of the English literature was performed that included original, review, consensus, and statement articles that were identified through Medline or National Institutes of Health-related links. According to the literature, osteoporosis constitutes a major public health problem. Approximately 55% of the U.S. population > or = 50 years of age has low bone mass (osteopenia or osteoporosis). Annually, > 200,000 women in the U.S. are diagnosed with breast carcinoma. Due to the high prevalence rates of both low bone mass and breast carcinoma in women, these two diseases commonly coexist in the same individuals. Women with a history of breast carcinoma may be at increased risk of developing bone loss and fragility fractures as a consequence of antineoplastic therapies. The majority of women treated for early-stage breast carcinoma do not develop recurrences, as a result of recent advances in therapy. Ensuring the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of long-term toxicities and comorbid conditions like osteoporosis in breast carcinoma survivors is a serious concern and is of increasing importance. In this article, the authors address the evaluation and treatment of osteoporosis in women who have a history of early-stage breast carcinoma.

(c) 2005 American Cancer Society.

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