Dr. Sparano on the Role of Endocrine Therapy in Breast Cancer

Joseph Sparano, MD
Published: Wednesday, Jul 27, 2016



Joseph Sparano, MD, associate chairman, Clinical Research, Department of Oncology, Montefiore Medical Center, associate director, Clinical Research, Albert Einstein Cancer Center, discusses the ways in which the role of endocrine therapy has evolved over the years as a treatment for patients with breast cancer.

Tamoxifen alone was once routinely given to both pre- and postmenopausal women with breast cancer, typically for a period of 5 years. However, research eventually moved towards the use of aromatase inhibitors as a treatment for postmenopausal women, with a continued use of tamoxifen as a treatment for premenopausal women. In both patient populations, the standard treatment duration was 5 years.

In the last couple of years, research has supported the use of ovarian function suppression with aromatase inhibitors to treat premenopausal patients with breast cancer. Moreover, recent data suggest that extended adjuvant therapy with aromatase inhibitors, when given for more than the standard 5 years, may be a significantly more effective treatment for patients.


Joseph Sparano, MD, associate chairman, Clinical Research, Department of Oncology, Montefiore Medical Center, associate director, Clinical Research, Albert Einstein Cancer Center, discusses the ways in which the role of endocrine therapy has evolved over the years as a treatment for patients with breast cancer.

Tamoxifen alone was once routinely given to both pre- and postmenopausal women with breast cancer, typically for a period of 5 years. However, research eventually moved towards the use of aromatase inhibitors as a treatment for postmenopausal women, with a continued use of tamoxifen as a treatment for premenopausal women. In both patient populations, the standard treatment duration was 5 years.

In the last couple of years, research has supported the use of ovarian function suppression with aromatase inhibitors to treat premenopausal patients with breast cancer. Moreover, recent data suggest that extended adjuvant therapy with aromatase inhibitors, when given for more than the standard 5 years, may be a significantly more effective treatment for patients.

View Conference Coverage
Online CME Activities
TitleExpiration DateCME Credits
Cancer Summaries and Commentaries™: Update from Chicago: Advances in the Treatment of Breast CancerJul 31, 20181.0
Community Practice Connections™: Medical Crossfire®: Translating Lessons Learned with PARP Inhibition to the Treatment of Breast Cancer—Expert Exchanges on Novel Strategies to Personalize CareAug 29, 20181.5
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