A 32-year-old member asked:
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are there different types of medications used for to treat breast cancer? what are the differences?

3 doctor answers
Dr. Martin Rubenstein
44 years experience Hematology and Oncology
Yes.: Some breast cancers are dependent on estrogen, so hormone therapy is used to either prevents the formation or block the effects of estrogen. Some have growth stimulated by a chemical call her2-neu, and there are drugs to block that. Finally there are chemo drugs that can kill all types of breast cancers.
Answered on Dec 12, 2013
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Dr. Barry Rosen
33 years experience General Surgery
Lots of Options!: Breast ca chemotherapy can be separated into 2 types: nonspecific drugs that attack rapidly dividing cells and tumor-specific ones. The latter category includes Herceptin (trastuzumab) (her2neu), tamoxifen (er+ or pr+), and aromatase inhibitors (er+ or pr+, post menopausal). Based on one's age and unique type of cancer, different combinations are recommended.
Answered on Jun 25, 2014
Dr. Devon Webster
21 years experience Medical Oncology
Yes! Many!: Some drugs kill dividing cells (chemotherapy), block estrogen (hormone therapy), or target individual cancer cells (biologic therapy). They can be given by vein, by mouth, or injected into a muscle. Your oncologist chooses the medication based on your specific type of breast cancer. Ask your doctor how the medicine works and what side effects to expect. It's great that you're interested!
Answered on Feb 18, 2013
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