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Format: 04/19/2014
Format: 04/19/2014

News

WTAE-TV: Breast Cancer Prevention Study Bringing New Hope

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Norma Kreutz and her husband recently got a around to fixing a squeaky kitchen floor that's bothered her for 30 years, but she also admits there's something else that's been on her mind for a long time.

"Everybody has to pass away, but I'm not going to pass away from breast cancer," said 68-year-old Kreutz.

Kreutz told WTAE Channel 4 Action News anchor Michelle Wright that her family has a history of breast cancer. Her grandmother was first diagnosed, followed by Kreutz's older and younger sisters.

"I'm in the middle of two sisters and I'm thinking, 'I was saved because of the drug study.' I really believe that," said Kreutz.

That particular study would be STAR -- the Study of Tamoxifen and Raloxifene. It's one of the largest breast cancer prevention studies and was done by the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project in Pittsburgh.

Kreutz said she joined the five-year international project following 19,000 at-risk women.

She said she didn't even know what she was taking every day.

"I was anxious to know, but it was going to be five years and I was thinking, 'Oh, I don't know if I'm going to last that long,'" said Kreutz.

Researchers found that Raloxifene was about as effective at preventing breast cancer as Tamoxifen, but without the risky side effects, including developing other forms of cancer.

Raloxifene also increases bone density.

Doctors seem confident in the results of the study.

"Women who are at higher risk for developing breast cancer can feel pretty confident if they want to take something to reduce their risk," said Dr. Jane Raymond, of Allegheny General Hospital.

To read more, visit the WTAE website.

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