Cant cope with hot flushes anymore


Im on Tamoxifen and zolidax and hot flushes are sending me round the bend! I know that i shouldnt moan as its only hot flushes that im getting, but they are making my life a misery!
I cant even eat without having to strip off and is embarrassing when im in a public place and i start sweating and going bright red! I cant sleep and find it difficult when im at work too!

If anybody knows of anything that calms the hot sweats down then pppllleeeaasse let me know i cant cope like this for another 4 years!!



Hi Emily,
Sorry to hear you are struggling so much with this. I only have mild hot flushes, and they are nuisance enough.
I think there are things that will reduce the sweating, which can be prescribed by your GP. Some one will come on here and tell you the name of the tablets, I’m sure. i read about it on one of the threads.
There are herbal remedies, too which may help. Ask in holland & barrett health food shop. I’ve heard of sage leaf tablets helping my neighbour greatly. Took 2 weeks to kick in, but she doesn’t actually sweat with her night-time flushes if she takes the sage leaf.
I’ve found certain foods seem to trigger my flushes in the evening. You might want to make note of when they seem worse.
I hope you find something to help, because it sounds horrendous at the moment. You can’t carry on like this!

Let us know how you get on.

Hi Emily

The publication from BCC ‘Menopausal symptoms and breast cancer’ may be helpful for you to read as it contains some information about how to manage hot flushes, you can read, order or download it via the following link:

I hope this helps, for more support and ideas please call our helpline 0808 800 6000 weekdays 9-5 and Sat 9-2.

Best wishes

you could go and see your oncologist, there are drugs they can use (megace) which reduce the effects immensely.
Anna x

I take starflower capsules and also had acupuncture and they have improved alot - dont know which one helped!

Hi Emily,

I know exactly what you mean, at one point I felt that I was having hot flushes for England. I would have them every 40 minutes around the clock. Awful.

What I have tried:

1.Starflower oil capsules and vitamin E capsules (both together). I think the starflower ones take a while to kick in (hard to say from my own experience as I was on evening primrose first, and trying various different things and it’s hard to know what makes the difference) but the vitamin E definitely makes a difference for me - I stopped taking them at one point and the difference was instant.
2. Splitting the tamoxifen dose - I now have 10mg tablets which I take morning & evening. I don’t understand how this works, as I had tried taking the 20mg tablets both in the morning & at night and the hot flushes were the same around the clock each way, so I don’t see how splitting the dose works, but it does for me.
3. Trying different brands of tamoxifen. My pharmacist always gets me the APS brand now as I have fewer hot flushes than on CPS Pharmaceuticals.
4.Acupuncture - a bit hit & miss, I have had four treatments now, 1st & 2nd worked a bit, 3rd was brilliant and kept the flushes v mild for about 3 months, 4th last week doesn’t seem to have had any effect.

I understand reflexology can also help, but haven’t tried that yet.

My hot flushes now come & go in intensity. I always have them, but these days it may only be 10 a day rather than the 30 plus I was having at one point. I am still having some mega ones at night which are the worst as they really disrupt my sleep.I am 15 months into tamoxifen, so 1/4 through the 5 years. Roll on Oct 2012!

On an encouraging note - women who have hot flushes on tamoxifen have fewer recurrences.

Hi all

I just wanted to remind everyone that it is important to check with your GP or cancer specialist before you start taking any supplements.

Best wishes

My oncologist referred me to the Homeopathic Hospital, because like you Emily my life was becoming a total misery. Now thank goodness, after her intervention they have dramatically improved. She is a Dr. turned homeopath, so she is very well acquainted with oncology, and many oncology patients get referreed to her for these dreadful flushes. Not sure there is any point me telling you what I am on, because I think that would be different for everybody. What area do you live in Emily? Do they have a homeopathy hospital there?

sympathies to all of you who are suffering hot flushes. horrible, but roadrunner is right - there does seem to be evidence emerging that hot flushes mean that tamoxifen is probably working better for you…i didn;t get any hot flushes and was worried! am now on femara and feel happier…

I’m on Arimidex and was finding the flushes unbearable especially as they were waking me then with a snoring OH meant i was only getting about 3 hours max a night but after i bought a Magnopulse as suggested by somebody else on this great site and it has helped soooo much.Downside is that you can be strangely attracted to sainsburys trolleys & baskets but do really think it’s worth a try for £20.I also have noticed days when i have a main meal at lunchtime and eat less at dinner that flushes less intense?

All the best
Karen x

if tamoxifen is causing the flushes try asking to be switched to nolvadex-d which is just a more expensive brand of the same thing. Lots of people on here have posted about switching and the flushes stopped. I am on it and have not had any yet, 8 weeks in so fingers still crossed

Hi Emily,

My doctor prescribed Clonidine tablets to help with the hot flushes. They do help but still get hot sometimes but no sweating. I’ve managed to cut my dose from 4 tablets to 2 (they are only little!).

Hope this helps


Hi Emily,
I was also prescribed Clonidine and have been ok , i still have flushes but not as bad and they don’t last as long… I also tried megace first but they didn’t suit me, made me quite depressed, i think it’s all trial and error.
best wishes

I had hot flushes every 90 minutes for months and nearly went round the bend. I tried acupuncture, splitting the tamoxifen dose, Clonidine, fish oils, sage tea, fans, chillow pillows… the list is endless. The only thing that worked was hypnotherapy. I didn’t think it would because I’m not susceptible to that sort of thing (quite cynical really) but it did work. Do consider it.
Good luck

Brilliant, thanks to everyone, im going to see my consultant next week and have spoken to my BC nurse and she said that there are things that can be prescribed to me that can help!

Cant wait to waive goodbye to the dreaded hot flushes!

Again thanks alot


Hi Emily,
Another clonidine girl here. Also on tamoxifen and zoladex. Found the summer unbearable but since September when I started on them things much better. Still have the occasional tropical moment but find a keeping a chillow under my normal pillow so I can put my head on it for a few minutes until I cool down works a treat as its mostly at night. Also installed a ceiling fan in the bedroom!!! a bit drastic I know but boy did it help me through the summer.
Good luck
Shonagh x