Bone Drug Reduces Breast Cancer Relapse

Women on Zometa had 35% less chance of having tumor again
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2008 7:21 PM CDT
Bone Drug Reduces Breast Cancer Relapse
A production plant of Swiss pharma giant Novartis.   (AP Photo/Keystone, Gaetan Bally)

A drug designed to protect cancer patients' bones also renders breast cancer relapses less likely, a new study says. Funded in part by the drug's maker, Novartis, researchers found that even two injections of Zometa a year cut tumor recurrence by 35% in more than 1,800 pre-menopausal women.

About 6% of women who took Zometa suffered a tumor relapse, compared to 9% who didn't. A doctor unaffiliated with the study warned women not to gobble up the drug, but said that “within the narrowly defined group of women who got the drug, this study would give one strong impetus to use Zometa.'' (More Novartis AG stories.)

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