Breast Cancer Home > Ellence Uses

Ellence is primarily used for treating breast cancer and preventing the cancer from returning after surgery. Occasionally, however, healthcare providers may also recommend the medication for treating other types of cancer. These "off-label" Ellence uses include the treatment of stomach cancer, bladder cancer, lung cancer, and ovarian cancer.

What Is Ellence Used For?

Ellence® (epirubicin hydrochloride) is a prescription medication used to treat breast cancer. It is part of a group of medications called anthracyclines. Specifically, Ellence is approved to help prevent breast cancer from returning after breast cancer surgery (with or without radiation) in people whose cancer had spread to axillary lymph nodes (lymph nodes in the underarm).
Ellence is used in combination with other chemotherapy medications (in a chemotherapy "regimen").

How Does Ellence Work?

Ellence is part of a group of medications called anthracyclines. Anthracyclines kill cells (including cancer cells and normal cells) by working in several ways. Ellence binds to DNA in cells, changing the shape of the DNA and causing other problems with the DNA. The medication can damage the membranes (outer coating) of cells and may damage other parts of cells as well.
While Ellence can kill both healthy and cancerous cells, it has a greater effect on cells that are multiplying rapidly. Generally, cancer cells multiply more rapidly than healthy cells and are, therefore, more affected by Ellence.

Ellence Uses in Children

Ellence is not approved for use in children. Children may be more sensitive to Ellence side effects. Talk to your healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of using Ellence in children.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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