Arimidex or not ...?

Arimidex or not …?

Arimidex or not …? Hi everyone

I finished my treatment in December 06 - mastectomy, 4 Epi, 2 Capecitabine and 2 CMF (did not do well on the chemo) followed by 15 sessions of radiotherapy. I had every side-effect going on the chemo, plus a few they hadn’t come across before! I was told at my first check-up that I needed no further treatment as I was triple negative.

Then, a fortnight ago at a checkup with my Oncologist, she said she had been reviewing my notes and found that a tiny number of cells had shown up as weakly oestrogen receptor positive and I should consider taking Tamoxifen. I had a blood test and she has now written to me suggesting I take Arimidex as I am menopausal, even though ‘the benefit would be small’.

She outlines the side effects and says that if I cannot tolerate it she would discontinue it. I did not do well on the chemo and kept being told how sensitive I am to drugs, so I am worried about these side effects, particularly the joint pain.

I already have a mobility problem due to previous spinal surgery so any more joint pain could seriously interfere with my ‘quality of life’. I have had hot flushes for about 8 years now (I’m 55) so that side effect wouldn’t bother me too much, but the osteoporosis worries me as I have deterioration in some of my discs already, following the surgery.

My friend has been on Arimidex for 2 years and had a whole year of not being able to walk further than the length of her sitting room, and barely being able to get out of her chair on some days!

The Oncologist has suggested I see my GP and discuss this, but I know what he will say - ‘try it out and see how you get on’. He admits he knows very little about breast cancer treatments. My other half, who has been brilliant all through my treatment, says it is up to me - so now I don’t know what to do.

Should I try the Arimidex or just take my chances. I hate taking tablets at the best of times!


Go with it Hi I have been on arimdex since Oct 06, yes will admit you do get a lot of aches and pains especially first thing in the morning it is difficult to get going, but the way to do it is to push youself little and often. I find that during the day if been sitting to long its hard to get up, so I try and walk around quite abit and also talk my mums dog for a long walk every night, I feel this helps me tremendously. Like everything else its diffierent strokes for different folks, but then again its better than the other option… Go on give it a try, if its no good dont take it, but go with what your doc says or contact your breast care nurse.

Let me know how you get on.

Love elaine

hello i agree with elaine on this one im taking arimadex and have had a mastectomy , i also had horrendous side effects with chemo and im allergic to a lot of drugs but if this is what i have to take to keep me going than the side effects are worth it ,yes some days i ache from head to toe ,but its worth it to be here and well . give it a go as elaine says and see it affects differant people differantly and you may not get side effects its like everthing else just trial and error. let us know how you get on ok? love lynn x

I stopped Arimidex on my GP’s suggestion. The joint pain and mental confusion where more than I could tolerate. I have since refused to take it, my oncologist is fine with this.
I must admit I found this a bit odd as I had a grade 3 stage, 3 cancer.
Plus side I’m back at work full time – and next month will be able to join the rapid response just as if nothing had happened.

Not bad for an old wiffie of 59.

However I think you should give it a go you can always stop it if the side effects are to much

Glo xx

iS ANYHONE ON THIS SITE TAKING AROMASIN? I took Arimidex for 18 months after my mastectomy, I started off ok then after about 3 months I started the awful joint pains. After being on it for 18 months I went back to my onc and told him that if he couldn’t come up with something else then I was just taking myself off it as I had no quality of life, so he put me on Aromasin - no one seems to talk about Aromasin:

AROMASIN (uh-ROME-uh-sin) is a prescription medicine available only through your doctor. It’s one of the options for treatment after early-stage breast cancer. It is a hormonal therapy approved for postmenopausal women who have had estrogen-receptor positive early breast cancer.

I have been on it almost 18 months with no side effects, apart from my ankles being slightly stiff when I wake up in the mornings, but it goes within 10 minutes of walking around. I seem to be the only person on this drug and it is wonderful, apparently it is steroid based so a lot of oncs seem to put people off going on it but I have no side effects whatsoever, haven’t put on weight, had mood swings or hot flushes. I just wish more people would inquire about this AI as it might work for you as it has done for me.

Aromasin I believe Sam52 has been on Aromasin for a few years. I think she had been on Arimidex previously, but not quite sure. Perhaps she might see this post and respond with her experience.

Arimidex or not! Like many I am having a rough time on Arimidex with lots of aches and pains,weight gain etc despite an active life style with trips to the gym and yoga. In addition I also have the trots constantly-again I have been told this is a usual side effect and should settle down-anyone else so afflicted???

… not for me… Hi Primula

I had a bad time on chemo which was stopped after 4 cycles, I was told very much the same as you regarding sensitivity and side effects. I too am weakly oestrogen receptor positive so the benefit would be small. I did give it a try but found the side effects too much and my Onc stopped them.

Good luck with whatever you decide.


Thanks everyone Hi

Thanks to everyone who responded with helpful information. I have been taking the Arimidex (and Adcal calcium tablets- yuk!) since 25 May and all OK so far. No adverse side effects.

I do, at the moment, ache from head to toe, but that could be to do with helping to take down an Escallonia hedge, build a new fence and spread 1000 kg of gravel … !!!

Thanks again Primula

I’m starting Aromasin too Roz - I’ve replied to your other thread about this.

I’ve now been prescribed Aromasin.

Let’s hope I feel as good on it as you do.

Best wishes