SEARCY COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - If you have taken Tamoxifen, Letrozole, Anastrozole, Exemestane or Fulvestrant, Dr. Landry K. Kamdem and his students want to hear from you.
Dr. Kamdem is an associate professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Harding University.
His pharmacy students want breast cancer patients or survivors to take a quick survey. The survey, lasting 10-15 minutes, will involve sharing information about medications.
"We are looking for people who have hormone receptor positive breast cancer, specifically," Morgan Nicholson, Harding University pharmacy student said. "It involves people taking hormonal drugs. We ask them to take a survey to see if they are adherent, or compliant in taking, those drugs. We want to know what type of side effects they've had. If they're not adherent, then we want to know why they were not adherent to their drugs. Was their medication too expensive? Were their side effects too bad?"
Breast cancer remains the second leading cause of death in women due to cancer in the United States. Despite improved breast cancer survival rates with the use of hormonal therapeutic drugs, patients remain at risk for cancer reoccurrence and mortality because of medication non-adherence.
A previous study by Shila Sawesi in 2014 suggested non-adherence could be as high as 70 percent.
"Basically, we want women to be impacted," Dr. Kamdem said. "When we do research, most of the time we forget people who are impacted. The real population, what do they think about those drugs? Do we want to take it? Is it expensive? Does it have any side effects? Are they satisfied with it? We really wanted to kind of learn about those people. How do they feel about those medications? Answers to these questions could help improve breast cancer survival rates."
That move is one which Dr. Kamdem has felt led to be a part of, having lost his own mother when he was a teenager.
"Through prayers, through spiritual nourishment, God was kind of telling me, 'You've got to think about the people,'" Dr. Kamdem said. "I was like 'Lord, how do you want me to do this for you?' And he was just like 'Follow my lead.' So basically, we want women to be impacted."
According to the pharmacy students and Dr. Kamdem, the goal of the study is to reduce breast cancer mortality or the number of women who die due to breast cancer and not taking their medications.
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