Hormone Therapy For The Treatment of Cancer
Hormones, most commonly produced by the ovaries and testicles, can help breast cancer or prostate cancer cells grow. Hormone therapy is given to cancer patients, post cancer surgery, and patients with a high risk of cancer, via methods which help to reduce or eliminate the production of hormones to prevent cancerous cells from growing or returning.
Tamoxifen, most commonly used to block estrogen, can be taken to help treat hormone-sensitive breast cancers. Breast cancers that lack estrogen receptors, though, are not affected by this form of hormone therapy as they do not use estrogen to grow.
Hormone Therapy For The Treatment of Menopause
Hormone therapy is most commonly given for the treatment of menopause to reduce the long term risks of osteoporosis and dementia as well as the short term conditions of menopause including heat flashes, vaginal dryness, fatigue, and cold sweats. Although there are some risks involved with hormone therapy, they are typically mild and serious health concerns are rare. The age of initial treatment can greatly affect the chances of side effects and it’s greatly beneficial to start hormone therapy pre-menopause as patients with hormone deficiency for long periods of time are more likely to suffer from health risks due to hormone therapy.
How Hormone Therapy Is Given
Hormone therapy for the treatment of menopause can be given in many forms including pills, skin patches, gels, creams, or spray form as systemic hormone therapy and via cream, tablet, or ring form for low-dose vaginal treatment.
Hormone therapy for the treatment of testosterone deficiency can be given via injection, creams, and oral pellets.
Hormone therapy for the treatment of breast cancer is typically given via drugs such as Tamoxifen which block estrogen; hormone therapy for the treatment of prostate cancer, also known as androgen deprivation therapy, is given via medications that cut off the supply of testosterone from reaching the cancer cells or it can involve surgery to remove the testicles.