Smoking can hamper breast cancer treatment

Women who smoke are less likely to respond to breast cancer treatments in comparison to those who abstain from it, and on the contrary they may be negatively affected by it, says a study. Women suffering with breast cancers were treated mostly with aromatase inhibitors — drugs that lower oestrogen levels in fatty tissue — that can reduce the risk of recurrence in women with oestrogen-receptive breast cancer.  The findings showed that the women, who attained menopause were conversely affected by aromatase inhibitors, as a result of smoking and were at an increased risk of dying, either from the breast cancer or from other illnesses.  “Smokers who were treated with aromatase inhibitors had a three times higher risk of recurrence of breast cancer compared with the non-smokers who got the same treatment,” said Helena Jernstrom, Associate Professor from Lund University in Sweden.

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