arimadex, bonefox, alcohol and laying down!

I am asking this question on behalf of a friend who as yet does not use this site. It affects us both though, coz we are both on arimidex.

She has heard that you should not drink alcohol while on arimidex because it makes the hot flushes more severe. Also, if you take bonefos too, you need to take it on an empty stomach, and you shouldn’t lay back down after taking them.

Can anyone help. Is this true? Why? and Why is it not stated on the info in the pack?

I hate the flushes, and don’t drink as much as I used too, but the thought of giving up alcohol as well as all the other crap we deal with is just too much to bare!


should read bonefos!

Hi Irene - I’m on Arimidex, just done about a month. Do find a glass of wine makes me feel rather heated. I tend to drink one or two glasses once or twice a week and put up with the flushes. a girl has to have some fun on a Friday night!!

Can’t help with the other - Good luck Swanie

Hi Irene I am afraid I am one of the naughty ones and do like acouple of glasses of wine most nights. I was post menopausal on diagnosis and finished with the hot flushes. I have not suffered with hot flushes while I have been on Arimidex even with the wine - I suffer badly with joint pain and other syptoms though. I have not heard anyone say not to drink wine while on Arimidex - although wine makes you feel warm on medication or not - Love Sandra

I’m on Ibandronate which is very similar to Bonefos. I take it in the morning after at least a 6 hour fast. I have to take it with tap water, (this is mentioned in the leaflet, not bottled water and definitely not with tea or coffee) it also mentions to wait 30 mins before taking any other food or drink although I wait an hour. With Ibandronate you are meant to stay upright, it helps to prevent any oesophagus (sp?) burning and/or gastric problems, (this is mentioned in the leaflet.) Having typed all this it all sounds a bit of a hassle…it’s not, honest, I’m used to it now and I’ve had no side effects whatsoever…

I’ve been on Arimidex for 6 months. I have kept a diary and the days when I drink more than one glass of wine I usually have more flushes in the night and sleep badly. I do think it depends on how big the glass is!!

I have made a consious effort to keep a track of my symptoms this wk and when I have wine, I definately have more hot flushes. Still could do with info regards the laying down when taking bonefos (for my mate). I don’t go back to bed myself but she does.

Am seeing my surgeon tomorrow so will ask her/him, depends which stranger i will see this time!


Been on Arimidex for 2 + years now. Wine and any sugary things defintely make the sweats worse. Must be the sugar in the alcohol. So it’s just a straightforward (or not) choice - have a glass of wine and not sleep at all or just stick to water and get some sleep. Thankfully not on Biphosporates at present - just waiting to see conssultant next week to discuss possibility, but I know that you have to take them on an empty stomach and stay upright for at least 1 hour. As I already have reflux and take meds for that, they are not quote sure what to do with me if oesteoporosis is getting worse - have just to wait and see,

Hi Irene

I’ve been on arimidex a year now and I wasn’t aware that you can’t drink. I don’t drink very much now and still get the hot flushes - sometimes very strange ones which are painfull in legs and arms. I also had my ovaries zapped to make me post menapausal so I think some of the hot flushes are due to that. I have accupuncture at the local hospice (free of charge) which has helped me with the flushes so that might be worth you exloring. worst side effect was joint stiffness especially on a morning but that seems to have settled now.

I also take bondronat and agree with what Belinda says. I tend to have the tablet on my bedside table with a drink of water and take it as soon as i wake up. If wanting to lie in i prop myself up on pillows.

As for sleeping I take Valerium which is a herbal remedy ( can give you wierd dreams) which helps me get at leats 4 hrs sleep most nights. If i am really shattered I have a sleeping pill zopiclone

Hope this helpd


Well got to see a doctor I recognised! Asked her about these points and she clarified:

Don’t take bonefos and lay back down cos it can cause reflux (heartburn) which can be hard to treat while on this drug and can lead onto more serious illnesses of the wind pipe and gut.

Alcohol is fine, but does seem to increase flushes. Research hasn’t pin pointed exactly why!

Bonefos is one of the better ones for tolerance if you suffer from heartburn (but is mega expensive so not always prescribed first) £33 K for 5 yrs treatment!!!

I sleep like poo most nights and have decided that yes, after wine I may sleep worse, but I looovvveee wine! NOT GIVING IT UP. I don’t drink that much. Everything in moderation.

Night night!


I have been on Arimidex for 4 years, had a hysterectomy 16 yrs ago for fibroids, so have always had hot flushes. They are no worse on Arimidex. I also drink perhaps too much wine, but I figure at 63 yrs old, with bc and Crohn’s I am going to live my life the way I want to.

I have been taking Alendronic Acid (a bisphophostase) once weekly (there is one you can have daily) along with twice daily Calcichew/Vit D for the past 2 years. I think my GP said it is also called Fosamax when he looked it up on his computer. I find the Alendronic Acid a real pain to take as I can’t have the morning cup of tea when getting up. The notes in my drug packet state you must stay upright for a half hour, and only take a large glass of water with the tablets. Must admit I don’t take it as often as I should. I am taking this because of bone density loss due to long term steroids, not bone mets. There is no mention of taking alcohol on the notes.

I am also self injecting methotrexate once weekly for my Crohn’s and alcohol is not advised as it can be toxic to the liver. I have monthly blood tests, including liver function, and after 6 years, am still doing okay. I figure I have to have some semblance of a normal life, and will continue to have wine with dinner each evening until my blood tests show otherwise.

Living with two insidious diseases is not easy… I could still die prematurely even if I didn’t have my evening glasses of white wine.