The UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Authority (MHRA) has approved anastrozole as a treatment for breast cancer prevention. Scientists believe that taking the drug will prevent 2,000 cases of the disease per year.
Anastrozole, an aromatase inhibitor previously used to treat breast cancer, is approved by the UK MHRA for the prevention of the disease. The statement was published on the National Health Service (NHS) website.
The document highlights that breast cancer remains the most common cancer in the UK, with 47,000 women diagnosed with the disease every year.
Experts recommend taking one anastrozole tablet per day for five years to all postmenopausal women at increased risk of developing breast cancer, including those with a family history of the disease. Scientists have calculated that the drug is indicated for 289 thousand women. If at least 25% of them took anastrozole, it would prevent 2,000 cases of cancer every year, the statement said. This will save the NHS around £15 million.
The drug was approved based on studies that showed that taking anastrozole reduces the risk of developing breast cancer in women at risk by 50%.
Experts call the most common adverse events when taking the drug vasomotor symptoms, weakness, joint pain, arthritis, rash, nausea, headaches, osteoporosis and depression.