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Endocrine therapy in early-stage breast cancer

March 07, 2022

Summary by

Shelly Beckley

Outcomes4Me sat down with Dr. Karen Smith, a medical oncologist specializing in breast cancer at Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, to discuss endocrine therapy in early-stage breast cancer. We have included the entire webinar video above for anyone who missed it and wants to watch it in full.

Here is a recap of the key takeaways from the discussion with Dr. Smith:

Who is this session relevant to?


What is endocrine therapy and why is it prescribed to early-stage breast cancer patients?


How effective is endocrine therapy at preventing a recurrence?

Does taking endocrine therapy for 10 years instead of 5 years significantly decrease a person’s chance of recurrence?

In the past year, many patients had to start endocrine therapy prior to surgery rather than after surgery due to COVID-19 related cancellations, does that  impact outcomes?

How do we know if endocrine therapy is working?

 Are there any alternative and/or holistic options to Tamoxifen?

What are your recommendations for managing side effects of hormone therapy?

What are your thoughts on decreased doses of endocrine therapy due to side effects?

Are the toxicity profiles of aromatase inhibitors (letrozole, exemestane, anastrozole) different?

Should endocrine therapy be discontinued or avoided if a woman wants to have children?

If you are looking for more support, resources, or have additional questions, submit your question using the “+” button on the 4Me tab and clicking on “Ask Outcomes4Me” in theOutcomes4Me app. The Outcomes4Me clinical care team will do their best to help you find an answer.