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What is Chemoprevention?

Chemoprevention is the use of chemical substances to intervene in the early precancerous stages. It is also known as chemoprophylaxis, and it works by inhibiting the development of cancer. This method of fighting cancer is used to reverse the formation of the tumor through natural and chemopreventive agents.


It involves taking medicines, vitamins or other agents. Some of the compounds that have this type of effect on cancerous growths are found in vegetables and fruits. An example of useful chemopreventive compounds includes dithiothiones. These occur naturally in vegetables, such as cauliflower and cabbage. Other substances used for chemoprevention include anti-estrogen drugs.

Cancer chemoprevention is used in people who are at a high risk of developing cancer. It can be used to improve their health condition by helping them stay cancer free. Taking medicine such as tamoxifen, which has anticancer effects, is one method used to achieve this.

The anticancer drug works by blocking the effects of estrogen. This is a reproductive hormone which affects the growth and development of tumors in the breast. It works by inhibiting the growth of cancerous cells in these areas.

Chemopreventive agents such as tamoxifen are known to have side effects. A person may be required to take the drug for several years for it to take full effect on the body. This is the reason why chemopreventive drugs such as tamoxifen are only recommended for patients who are at a high risk of developing cancer.

It is advisable to consult with a doctor or physician about possible risks of developing cancer and about the treatment options that are available. This is used to determine the possible and side effects associated with some of the alternatives. Based on these facts a doctor can recommend cancer chemoprevention if it is a suitable form of cancer treatment for the patient.

The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.