Breast cancer is one of the most-significant issues among women, with annual diagnosis and mortality rates of around 2.3 million and 685,000, respectively. Moreover, the IARC predicts the annual new diagnoses of this deadly disease to cross 3 million by 2040, thus putting increased financial and emotional burden not only on patients, but also their loved ones and caregivers.
Similarly, the WHO’s Global Breast Cancer Initiative aims at reducing the incidence of this condition by 2.5% each year and, in the process, saving 2.5 million lives over 20 years. These initiatives are not only taken by the WHO at the global level, but also by its regional subsidiaries, such as the Pan American Health Organization; the Americas account for almost 25% of all new breast cancer diagnoses annually.
Recognizing the Telltale Signs of Breast Cancer
Like every disease, breast cancer has some classical symptoms. The most common among them are changes in the breasts’ shape or size, pain in the area, discharge of anything else other than milk, such as blood, from the nipples, and a lump in the area or the underarms, which is easily palpable.
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After the diagnosis has been confirmed, you will be advised a range of treatments, from a simple yet long regimen of pills to surgery to remove either the tumor or the entire breast. In this blog, let’s talk about drugs, the simplest and most-convenient of treatment options.
Approved Drugs for HR+ Breast Cancer
HR+ breast cancer is of two types—ER+ and PR+—meaning estrogen-receptor-positive and progesterone-receptor-positive, respectively. This means that these cancer cells grow and multiple as their receptors come into contact with either estrogen or progesterone. The currently approved drugs for HR+ breast cancer include ribociclib, palbociclib, everolimus, abemaciclib, and alpelisib, all of which can be either used with or after hormone therapy.
Approved Drugs for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer
Triple-negative breast cancer is the trickiest to treat as it does not have any of the ER, PR, and HER receptors on the surface of the cells. So, the drugs that inhibit the production of these hormones, to stop the cancer cells from growing and spreading, do not work on triple-negative breast cancer. For patients with this disease who have undergone at least two therapies before are administered with sacituzumab govitecan-hziy.
Hence, as the diagnostic and therapeutic technologies continue to advance, the survival rated for patients with breast cancer may improve further. The success of these advances is crucial for developing countries, as the top 10 countries in terms of annual breast cancer mortality are all developing ones.