Is Raloxifene or Tamoxifen more effective on reducing the risk of developing invasive breast cancer and other disease outcomes?

From: JAMA

Journal rating:
rating: 100%
Study Quality:
rating: 85%

Overall Reliability

Article Quality:
rating: 75%
rating: 75%


  • 19,747 postmenopausal women of average age 58.5 years with increased 5-year breast cancer risk


  • Oral tamoxifen (20mg/d) or raloxifene (60mg/d) was taken over 5 years.


  • There were 163 cases of invasive breast cancer in women assigned to tamoxifen and 168 in those assigned to raloxifene (incidence, 4.30 per 1000 vs 4.41 per 1000).
  • There were fewer cases of noninvasive breast cancer in the tamoxifen group (57 cases) than in the raloxifene group (80 cases).
  • There were 36 cases of uterine cancer with tamoxifen and 23 with raloxifene.
  • No differences were found for other invasive cancer sites, for ischemic heart disease events, or for stroke.  
  • The number of osteoporotic fractures in the groups was similar. There were fewer cataracts and cataract surgeries in the women taking raloxifene.
  • There was no difference in the total number of deaths (101 vs 96 for tamoxifen vs raloxifene) or in causes of death.


  • Raloxifene is as effective as tamoxifen in reducing the risk of invasive breast cancer


Editors Notes

  • Potential conflict of interest associated with two of the authors who have both declared that they have worked for Eli Lilly & Company (who market Raloxifene).