Nolvadex uses are primarily concerned with treating and preventing metastatic breast cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ, and node-positive breast cancer. The drug also may be used in an off-label fashion to treat McCune-Albright syndrome in girls ages 2 to 10. Other off-label Nolvadex uses include the treatment of other types of cancer (such as skin or brain cancer) and inducing ovulation in women with infertility.
Nolvadex Uses: An OverviewNolvadex® (tamoxifen citrate) is a prescription medication used to treat and prevent breast cancer. Specifically, the following Nolvadex uses have been approved:
- Treatment of metastatic breast cancer (cancer that has spread beyond the breasts) in men and women
- Treatment of node-positive breast cancer (breast cancer that involves the lymph nodes) in postmenopausal women who have undergone breast cancer surgery or radiation
- Treatment of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which is early cancer of the ducts of the breasts that has not yet spread to the rest of the breast, in women who have undergone breast cancer surgery or radiation to reduce the risk of invasive breast cancer
- Breast cancer prevention in women who are at high risk for the disease.
Understanding Breast CancerWomen in the United States get breast cancer more than any other type of cancer, except for skin cancer. Each year, more than 211,000 American women learn that they have the disease. Most breast cancer causes are unknown. In 5 to 10 percent of these cases, there is a hereditary component. Common symptoms of breast cancer include:
- A lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the underarm area
- A change in how the breast or nipple feels
- Nipple tenderness
- A change in how the breast or nipple looks
- A change in the size or shape of the breast
- A nipple turned inward into the breast
- Nipple discharge (fluid).
In general, breast cancer treatment options can include:
- Surgery (see Breast Cancer Surgery)
- Radiation therapy (see Breast Cancer Radiation)
- Chemotherapy (see Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer)
- Hormone therapy, such as Nolvadex (see Breast Cancer Hormone Treatment)
- Biological therapy (see Biological Therapy for Breast Cancer).
The treatment that is best for a particular person will depend on the stage of the breast cancer (see Breast Cancer Treatment by Stage).