Acupuncture Reduces Hot Flashes in Breast Cancer Survivors

“Acupuncture may be a viable treatment for women experiencing hot flashes as a result of estrogen-targeting therapies to treat breast cancer, according to a new study from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Hot flashes are particularly severe and frequent in breast cancer survivors, but current FDA-approved remedies for these unpleasant episodes, such as hormone replacement therapies are off-limits to breast cancer survivors because they include estrogen. The results of the study are published this week in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

” ‘Though most people associate hot flashes with menopause, the episodes also affect many breast cancer survivors who have low estrogen levels and often undergo premature menopause, following treatment with chemotherapy or surgery,’ said lead author Jun J. Mao, MD, MSCE, associate professor of Family Medicine and Community Health. ‘These latest results clearly show promise for managing hot flashes experienced by breast cancer survivors through the use of acupuncture, which in previous studies has also been proven to be an effective treatment for joint pain in this patient population.’ “

Hot Flashes Going Unrecognized, Leaving Women Vulnerable

“Hot flashes are one of the most distressing conditions faced by women who have been treated for breast cancer, but they are not being adequately addressed by healthcare professionals and some women consider giving up their post cancer medication to try and stop them, a new study has shown More than 70 per cent of women who have had breast cancer experience menopausal problems, and hot flashes in particular, which are among the most prevalent and potentially distressing problems following breast cancer treatment.”

No Help for Hot Flashes in Prostate Cancer

“A regimen found useful for treating hot flashes in female cancer patients failed to relieve vasomotor symptoms in prostate cancer patients treated with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), according to a randomized trial. Neither the antidepressant venlafaxine nor soy protein — alone or in combination — reduced the frequency or severity of hot flashes. Certain measures of quality of life (QOL) improved with soy protein but not with venlafaxine or the combination, Mara Z. Vitolins, DrPH, RD, of Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., and co-authors reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.”

Usual 'Hot Flash' Therapies Don't Help Prostate Cancer Patients: Study

“Treatments that ease hot flashes in menopausal women are not effective against hot flashes in men undergoing hormone therapy for prostate cancer, a new study finds. Hormone therapy in prostate cancer patients reduces levels of male hormones (androgens) to prevent them from reaching prostate cancer cells and stimulating cancer growth. Hot flashes occur in about 80% of prostate cancer patients undergoing hormone therapy.”