The adherence to practice guidelines in the assessment of bone health in women with chemotherapy-induced menopause

Yee Lu Tham, Krystal Sexton, Heidi L. Weiss, Richard M. Elledge, Lois C. Friedman, Rita M. Kramer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Premenopausal women are diagnosed with 25% of all invasive breast cancers; adjuvant chemotherapy given to many of this population may induce menopause and increase the risk of osteoporosis development. Guidelines issued by the American Society of Clinical Oncology recommend regular assessment of bone health in such women. To assess appropriate attention to bone health, we performed a retrospective, cross-sectional survey of young women at high risk of osteoporosis secondary to chemotherapy-induced premature menopause. In all, 102 women with chemotherapy-induced menopause, 75% of whom were 40 years of age or younger, were asked whether they underwent screening and preventive measures for osteoporosis. Only 56% had discussed bone health with their healthcare providers; age at diagnosis, race, and use of tamoxifen were not linked to the likelihood of such discussions. Regular exercise was recommended to 73% of the women, calcium supplementation to 56%, and bone mineral density (BMD) testing to 40%. Approximately one half of the women regularly exercised and took a calcium supplement; however, over 37% of those using a supplement took less calcium than that recommended to prevent osteoporosis. Further, 32% reported having had BMD testing;women 40 years of age or younger were less likely to have had such tests (27%) than were older women (48%; P = 0.05). More emphasis must be given to educating breast cancer survivors with chemotherapy-induced menopause about bone health and its maintenance. Approved therapies to prevent osteoporosis probably are underused in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-298
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Supportive Oncology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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