Anyone lost weight whilst on AIs

Hello
Before BC I always weighed around 8st 12 and always had to watch my weight. During treatment and Tamoxifen it went up to just above 10st and even though I tried very hard couldn’t get rid of it whilst on Tamoxifen.
Finished Tamoxifen 3 1/2 years ago and went on to Letrozole and started losing the weight but now can’t seem to stop and am now around 7 1/2 stone. Eat the same if not more, no longer work, have been diagnosed with Burning Mouth Syndrome since being on Letrozole and on 10mg Nortriptyline. Have really bad indigestion at times and on Omeprazole.
Has anyone lost any weight whilst on any AIs, was wondering whether it could be that AIs are supposed to block Oestrogen and this could be the reason I am losing weight but I have to say that I think I have only seen one other person who has lost weight.
Anyone else losing weight on AIs?
Hazel

Bringing this to the top for hazelmary

Jo, Facilitator

Hi, Hazel. I started Arimidex/Anastrozole about a year ago, and I have certainly found it easier to lose weight since then–I’m one of those who put on weight in a scarily short time during menopause (but not very much during chemo), so the fairly steady but gradual weight loss is a good thing for me, as long as it stops somewhere around ‘healthy’. I’ve recently spoken to someone on Letrozole who is also losing menopausal weight. If you’re dropping below a healthy weight, you really should see your GP or ask to see your Onc. I seem to remember reading somewhere that weight loss was a less common side effect of Arimidex, but that may have been associated with loss of appetite. I haven’t noticed any persistent loss of appetite, but my eating patterns were disrupted by chemo and I have kept the habit of eating smaller portions. And since I retired abput a year ago as well, I am probably more physically active.
Especially if you are having digestion problems as well as losing weight, you should ask for a review of your medications.
I hope you can get it sorted soon.
Cheryl

Hi I have been on Arimidex for 3 years now and I too have lost weight. Initially I was just over 11 stone but I now weight 10 and a half stone. I didn’t try to lose weight and still have an appetite. I thought this could have been due to the Arimidex as it can be one of the side effects.

Laurasue

Hello
Thank you for your replies.
I have been to my GP about my weight loss and go back to him this week as I had to go for blood tests and chest Xray. He looked through previous visits and I was weighed in 2007 and was 9st 11. He weighed me again and I am currently 7st 11 so I have lost 2 stone but that is since finishing Tamoxifen in 2009. I can remember weighing just over 10stone back then.
I didn’t notice it too much at first but it has become more noticable in the last 9 months or so. I have a photo taken in Feb this year where I look anorexic. As I have always had a problem with weight gain since childhood (I was quite podgey as a child)it seems so strange for it suddenly to be the opposite and I wondered if it was something to do with having less estrogen in the body which is what Letrozole is doing.
Hazel

Hi
I’m on Letrazole and TRYING to lose weight! I also cut down portions whilst on chemo last year, and maintained my weight, which I was quite pleased with. I didn’t want to eat much the first week after treatment, but then make up for it with cream teas in my 3rd week!!! It worked to keep me static. Now I hardly ever have the cream teas, eat smaller portions and have lost a few pounds, but not as much as I would like. It’s certainly not dropping off…
be interesting to see what your GP says this week…

Jane

Hello Hazel, I think the losing weight can be for all sorts of reasons so it is difficult to work out which of the treaments is causing weight loss. I was always skinny as a younger woman but with each of my 2 children I put on weight and at my heaviest I would be about 12 stone 6lbs. But now I an under 10 stone and have been losng weight quite slowly over a long period of time. But it is very noticible and I had to buy smaler trousers etc. But I feel better for the weightloss but do not want to drop any more. I am going to discuss it with my doctor.
I am on Femara (Letrozole) for many years now, having been on other hormone blocking tablets since I was diagnosed with bone mets in 1999. But I have also been on chemo (Capecitabine) and my appeitite is very poor but I do try to eat well when I do eat, home made soups, lots of fruit, and one proper meal at teatime but smaller portions than before and a light lunch. If my husband didn’t plonk food in front of me I would probably not eat so well. But I have cut back on cream and am not enjoying wine as much as before and days go by when I do not have any alcohol at all. It feels as if my “I am feeling hungry button” has been switched off as I used to really enjoy food and loved cooking and baking cakes and breads. I have had a hip replacement 3 weeks ago and my husband has been doing nearly all of the cooking for many months now. Luckily for me he is a wonderful cook and really looks after me.
As we get older we seem to need less food than when we were working and bringing up our families. Stress can also cause weight loss and I my Mum died in June. I think there are so many factors that can call weight loss. But it is wise to keep an eye on things and speak to your doctor if it is causing you concern. I am happy with my weight loss as it makes moving about easier and I am less breathless. Hope this helps a little. Take care, Val