arimidex side affects, help needed

Hi all

Thought I may try this section to see if any of you folk out there can help me coz I am so fed up. I have been on arimidex for 2 mths and this wk I started with lots of joint pain. This, on top of a newly aquired bladder weakness, being overweight, only 1 boob and growing facial hair has all added to really depress me. I feel 70. Thinking about asking for anti-depressents as was offered some a while ago and decided to try and manage without but life feels pretty crap just now.

Had a routine app with surgeon this wk. She wants me to try and persevere with arimidex for another 6 wks with the option that I can contact her anytime to bring my next app forward. We can then discuss either me coming off all together, or a swap to Tamoxifen. I don’t want either of these options so hoping my body starts to tollerate the arimidex better as this can happen at about 3 mths she says.

Is this true? Do any of you out there know if I come off arimidex and opt for nothing, will I start to get my femininity back? I know that this treatment may prolong my life, but I am so miserable, I am wondering if I should take a chance and try with not hormone inhibitors.

Any help appreciated.


Hello Irene

I am 44 and pre menopausal.

Just to let you know my experiences. I was prescribed Arimidex and Zoladex as I wasn’t keen to take Tamoxifen and the Onc wanted me to try something else instead, so I agreed to give it a go.

After 3 months of feeling absolutely rubbish with hot flushes, no sleep, bad joint pains, vaginal dryness that makes sex a nighmare despite using lubricants (sorry to be so graphic), I have decided to stop taking it, and I know in the next few weeks I will start feelilng better.

I would not recommend that anyone stops taking their treatment, but for me, this is the right choice, as the small percentage it makes to my prognosis is not worth how it makes me feel, and I have real peace about my decision. If I had a different prognosis this would no doubt have made a difference to my decision. I totally respect everyones right to make the choice that is best for them and hopefully they will understand and respect my choice.

It is entirely a personal thing, but I totally understand how you are feeling.

Sorry I can’t be more helpful, and I hope you can find the right option for you.

Wishing you all the best, love Deborah xxx


I have been on Arimidex for 6 months now after having my ovaries removed. Around the 3 months mark I had a lot of joint pains, feet were very painful on getting out of bed and it must have looked really weird watching me get down the stairs. Burning elbows was the worst symptom for me. I must admit though I still have the above but nowhere near as bad, it is all calming down. I was told it takes up to a year for your body to adjust. Its not only taking the arimidex that causes these side effects its also the body’s way of coping with absolutely no oestrogen. The body should have a little oestrogen but unfortunately for us that can’t happen. No oestrogen in itself can cause these unpleasant aches and pains. Try and persevere if you can, it does get better.

Love K

Thanks to you both for your comments. I think if things don’t improve, I will ask for the statistics for me if I take nothing. I have friends on tamoxifen, them and some of you ladies on here also seem to be complaining about it’s side effects, the main 1 being weight gain and if I get any fatter I won’t be able to bear anyone, let alone me, look at me, I’ll be a recluse!

I was on HRT before my diagnosis and so was getting extra oestrogen then. Maybe if I return to just my own bodies natural production of a limited ammount of it (I am post menopausal), I wont be at such a great risk. What a dilema.


I find that Arimidex gives me some joint pain, but I’ve been on it for a year or so now and my feet are behaving themselves better now than 6 months ago when I looked like a drunk every time I got out of bed.
I know that my symptoms are much less of a problem than for many others, and wonder whether I might be helped by taking glucosamine, which I’ve been on for several years before the cancer due to creaking knees (my yoga teacher suggested it because they were making such loud noises that the entire class could hear them). It’s generally used to combat the effects of arthritis.

Glucosamine cannot do you any harm but personally I don’t think it does any good. It just costs a lot. I took it for 3 years for my knees but stopped a year ago and do not notice any difference. Am on Arimidex and find that the side effects get better the longer you are on it. Fingers crossed.

Hi all

Ive been on Arimadex for 16 months and I just wanted to say that it does gett better. Up until a few months ago I was struggling in the morning with walking, but in the past months all the nasty symptoms have gone and Ive started to feel so much better. I think the body must take a while to get back into sinc.

Hope it gets better.
Debbie x

Thanks all

I think I am starting to feel a bit better this wk. My knee pain has subsided but now have neck and elbow pain but not as bad so bareable.


Have just had a few days without alcohol and have to say the hot flushes are much better. Also stopped coffee and spicy foods. Not sure which is the culprit, or all of them, but will introduce them back one at a time and see what happens. Always feel better when the sun shnes and sadly that is not often!