Testosterone pellets have long been used as a treatment for symptoms of hormone deficiency in pre and post-menopausal women. However, there is a lack of documented data on the long-term effects of testosterone insertion on breast cancer incidence.
In this article:
- Testosterone Therapy for Breast Cancer Treatment
- A Case Study
- Subcutaneous Testosterone Pellets Did Not Increase the Incidence of IBC
- Implications for Additional Studies
Testosterone Pellets in Breast Cancer Treatment:
Testosterone Therapy for Breast Cancer Treatment
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women around the world. As evidence suggests the protective role of androgen for breast tissues, testosterone insertion has been a popular treatment for hormone deficiency in pre and post-menopausal women for over eight decades.
Unfortunately, there is insufficient data on bio-similar testosterone therapy’s long-term effect on invasive breast cancer (IBC) patients. This reality is worth public attention as more studies on testosterone implants’ proposed benefits in pre and post-menopausal women are being published.
Did you know? Women who have gone through menopause have a greater chance of developing cancer, especially breast cancer. Studies suggest that women attaining menopause after 55 years old have an increased risk of breast cancer.
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A Case Study
A study by Rebecca L. Glaser (Glaser et al. BMC Cancer 2019) investigated pre and post-menopausal women with symptoms of androgen deficiency to see whether subcutaneous (under the skin) testosterone pellets and/or testosterone pellets combined with anastrozole (T and/or T+A therapy) would pose a risk of IBC to them.
This prospective cohort study spanned over 10 years, from March 2008 to March 2018.
Definition: A prospective cohort study is a longitudinal study following a group of people who are alike in various ways but differ for certain factors. The study then compares those factors for a specific outcome over time. For example, a study may investigate lung cancer rates among female nurses who smoke and do not smoke.
Subcutaneous Testosterone Pellets Did Not Increase the Incidence of IBC
The study results suggest that long-term treatment of subcutaneous T and/or T+A therapy for androgen deficiency symptoms in pre and post-menopausal women did not increase invasive breast cancer incidence.
Until March 2018, IBC cases’ incidence was 39% less than the expected number, with a total of 11 (versus the expected 18) cases diagnosed in patients within 240 days since their last testosterone insertion.
Implications for Additional Studies
Although testosterone pellets are not novel, additional studies should investigate T therapy’s effects on breast cancer prevention.
It also prompts the need to separately investigate T and T+A implants’ effects on the incidence of IBC in long-term controlled trials.
While the case study shows that long-term treatments of subcutaneous T and T+A pellets do not increase the incidence of IBC, additional studies are needed to gain a complete understanding of testosterone implants and their effects on breast cancer prevention.
Read the original publication of this study here.
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