Breast Cancer Treatment Tied to Endothelial Dysfunction

Women on aromatase inhibitors exhibit less elasticity in their blood vessels
Women on aromatase inhibitors exhibit less elasticity in their blood vessels

HealthDay News — Women taking aromatase inhibitors may show signs of early endothelial dysfunction that could lead to cardiovascular disease, according to a study presented at the annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, held in Texas.

The results are based on 36 postmenopausal women with early-stage breast cancer who were prescribed an aromatase inhibitor. For comparison, the researchers looked at 25 healthy women the same age. The researchers performed biomarker analysis and pulse wave analysis to gauge several components of endothelial function. 

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Overall, the investigators found, women on aromatase inhibitors showed less elasticity in their blood vessels, and scored significantly lower on the EndoPAT ratio measure (0.8 in the breast cancer survivors who took aromatase inhibitors and 2.7 in the controls).

Lead researcher Anne Blaes, MD, of the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, pointed to the importance of a healthy diet and regular exercise. "Often, women were not physically active before their breast cancer diagnosis, and that continues afterward," Blaes told HealthDay. "My advice is, try to find ways to keep moving."

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