Anyone taken Arimidex for longer than 5 years?

I have a routine appt with my onc on Thursday, and as I have now been on Arimidex for almost 4.5 yrs (following about 4 months of Tamoxifen), I intend to ask her “what next?”
Arimidex was quite a new treatment for primary cancer when I was first prescribed it, and the assumption was I would take it for 5yrs.
Is anyone aware of research results for the optimum period to remain on Arimidex, or is it just too soon to know???
I’m sure that some of you must have been given this drug in late 2004/early 2005. If so, could you please share what your oncs have said about continuing / ceasing to take it.

Many thanks, Minx


My mum had been on it for 5 yrs in Aug 07 and after a team meeting it was decided to keep her on it for at least another 2 yrs if she didn’t mind taking the tablet once a day ! Not sure if the fact that I’d been diagnosed in July 07 had any bearing on the medical team’s decision. My mum is 74 now and fine (for her age - whoops hope she doesn’t mind me saying this !) and I’m 44 but have to have zoladex as well as I’m technically pre-menopause even though the chemo made me menopausal - it’s my age !! I’ve only been on it for just over 6 months and have the usual side effects but better that than the cancer getting worse (I’ve some bone mets). I would be happy to have it for as long as it works.


Minx my onc told me that they are awaiting results of a couple of studies on longer term usage of Arimidex which are due in the next year or two. He believes that both Tamoxifen and the AIs will be increased to 8 years. Time will tell if he is right.

You have the same dilemma as me. Technically I should have stopped taking Arimidex last week but I’m keen to stay on for longer, despite side effects. I was initially on Tamoxifen for a year and a half then switched to Arimidex to complete the alloted 5 years hormone treatment. I know my consultant wants me to stop taking the drug and, in his words, forget all about cancer(!!)However after a dx with 5cm hormone pos. 12node pos.cancer (was being checked every six months so blame hospital for such advanced situation)I feel staying on Arimidex is the way forward. I have an appointment in May at the review clinic and would like some evidence to present to the doctor. So far haven’t been able to find any but lots of mutterings from America that extending hormone treatment will be a good thing. So that is good enough for me. I’m osteopenic but regular DXA scans show that is stable without treatment. If my bones stay reasonably healthy then I can see no reason to stop the pills.
How do you feel about this stage of your ‘life with cancer’? I’m feeling quite vulnerable but also unable to talk about it with anyone as, six years on from dx, I’m supposed to be over it.