Symptom management in premenopausal patients with breast cancer

Charles L. Loprinzi, Sherry L. Wolf, Debra L. Barton, Nadia NI Laack

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Women with breast cancer have many adverse symptoms, of which some are specific to premenopausal patients. Management of these common symptoms include non-hormonal drugs, such as antidepressants and antiseizure compounds to alleviate hot flushes. Non-oestrogenic vaginal lubricants seem to moderately decrease occurrence of vaginal dryness and dyspareunia. Transdermal testosterone alone has not been shown to improve libido in these women. Options for fertility preservation include cryopreservation of embryos or oocytes before chemotherapy. Exercise is the one evidenced-based intervention shown to positively affect cancer-related fatigue. However, effective prevention and treatments for peripheral neuropathy and paclitaxel acute pain syndrome remain elusive. Weight-bearing exercise helps to maintain bone strength with adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D. Use of bisphosphonates in women taking aromatase inhibitors (combined with ovarian suppression in premenopausal women) to prevent bone fractures has not been substantiated, although it should be considered in women with osteoporosis. No specific drug has been shown to prevent radiation-induced dermatitis alone. Although some effective treatments can counteract symptoms related to cancer or treatments, research is needed to expand evidence-based care in premenopausal survivors of breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)993-1001
Number of pages9
JournalThe Lancet Oncology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


Dive into the research topics of 'Symptom management in premenopausal patients with breast cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this