The trade name Aromasin is used to treat breast tumors in postmenopausal women with moderate breast cancer. This drug is an aromatase inhibitory receptor antagonist. It acts by reducing the level of estrogen produced in the body.
Progesterone is released from the pituitary gland after ovulation and plays a major role in regulating the release of estrogen in the bloodstream. The increase in progesterone during menopause causes the mammary gland to decrease its production of breast tissue. During menopause, the breasts become less sensitive to estrogen. Aromasin blocks the enzyme that converts estrogen into progesterone, thus blocking the release of progesterone.
Although aromasin is approved for use only in the treatment of estrogen-sensitive cancers, it is being studied as a possible alternative to hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and surgery for breast reduction. This drug can help women suffering from gynecomastia, which is breast enlargement due to excessive exposure to the sun. Gynecomastia may be an indication of a tumor on the mammary gland or in the breast ducts.
To treat gynecomastia and breast cancer, a woman takes Aromasin on a regular basis in addition to taking her regular hormonal prescription. Studies have indicated that when taken together, Aromasin may provide breast reduction results that are similar to those obtained with surgery. Because of its ability to inhibit estrogen production, Aromasin does not change the normal hormonal balance in the body and is unlikely to increase the risk of ovarian cancer.
Breast cancer that has spread to the lymph nodes is treated with surgery. Surgery removes the affected breast or nipple and the lymph nodes. Chemotherapy is used in conjunction with surgery to destroy cancerous cells in the lymph nodes. The chemotherapy drugs used in combination can stimulate the immune system to fight cancer. Many drugs that are used in conjunction with Aromasin are used in conjunction with other cancer drugs.
There are a few side effects associated with Aromasin, and one is increased breast tenderness, especially when the drug is taken by women who are undergoing menopause. If the drug is taken to treat gynecomastia, a woman may experience a decrease in breast size during pregnancy and breast tenderness may occur in women who are experiencing periurethral menopause. Aromasin may cause changes in sexual function and the inability to ejaculate, which may occur at some time during the menopausal period. Some patients may experience nausea, dizziness, constipation, abdominal pain, upset stomach and vomiting.
Aromasin does not affect breast growth, but if used to treat gynecomastia and breast cancer it may improve the appearance of the breast when used alone or in combination with hormone replacement therapy. Although the drug is not approved for use in treating malignant breast tumors, it is being studied as an adjunct in the treatment of benign tumors of the breast. The hormone replacement therapy is not accompanied with any risk for heart attack or stroke. The drug has been shown to increase bone density in women, but has not been evaluated in studies comparing Aromasin with tamoxifen in the treatment of breast cancer. Other studies are testing its safety in patients who have breast cancer or are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer or premenstrual syndrome.
In some studies, Aromasin has been shown to be effective in treating breast cancer. In the breast cancer studies, the treatment has not been evaluated on pregnant women or patients taking tamoxifen. This potential drug for treating gynecomastia has been the subject of intense scientific study in both animals and humans. Aromasin can be purchased over the counter at drug stores. Because of the number of safety concerns associated with Aromasin, some doctors will not prescribe this medication to women who want to use it for gynecomastia treatment.