OBJECTIVE: To report the incidence of chemotherapy-related amenorrhea (CRA) from chemotherapy with/without adjuvant endocrine therapy in premenopausal women with breast cancer and to analyze the related factors.
DESIGN: From January 2000 to August 2006, 326 premenopausal women (<or=50 y old) who completed chemotherapy were available for analysis. The CRA definitional criterion in this study was no menstruation for 6 months in a woman who was premenopausal at diagnosis. As risk factors for CRA, woman's age, the type of chemotherapy regimen, adjuvant endocrine therapy use, and body mass index were evaluated.
RESULTS: The median age was 42 years (range, 22-50 y). The median follow-up period was 37 months (range, 12-80 mo). Women were divided into two groups by age at diagnosis: 128 women in group 1 (less than 40 years old) and 198 women in group 2 (age >or=40 y). CRA occurred in a total of 223 (68%) women: 43% in group 1 and 85% in group 2 (P < 0.001). Despite CRA, 14% resumed menstruation: 24% in group 1 and 11% in group 2. Another 40 (12%) women had less than 6 months of menstruation interruption. Permanent CRA was related with age at diagnosis and use of adjuvant endocrine therapy (P < 0.05). In this study, there were four pregnancies, two of which resulted in therapeutic abortion due to ongoing chemotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS: This study confirmed that the rate of CRA depends on age at diagnosis and the use of adjuvant endocrine therapy. It is essential to inform young women of reproductive age of the possibility of amenorrhea or resumption of menstruation and contraceptive options.
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