Cholesterol and Letrozole



I finished 5 years of Letrozole in April and as a general checkup yesterday at my GPs for patients aged 40 to 74 I had a cholesterol check and it came out at 6.3 and will now have a fasting blood test next week. This is the first check I have had and I was a bit shocked at the result.


It does say on the Letrozole info inside the packet about an increase in cholesterol being a side effect but unless you have a check whilst on Letrozole how would you know whether its increased or not.


I am slim, walk for 1 1/2 hours every day, eat healthily, doing everything I can to keep well and now I find this out. I told the nurse who did the check that after 10 years of Tamoxifen and Letrozole I will not be going on statins especially as my husband is on them and I see how he is affected so am hoping that my cholesterol will go down. Apparently I am doing the wrong kind of excercise, it should be more aerobic exercise , well I do walk quite fast!


Anyone else had similiar problem,




Hi Hazel,

Sorry you haven’t had any replies to your question as yet, but hopefully someone will now see your post.  You are most welcome to give our helpline team a call and have a chat to them about your concerns, they will do their best to help.  Calls are free 0808 800 6000 lines open weekdays 9-5 and Saturdays 10-2.

Take care,

Jo, Moderator

Hi Hazel,


I have just seen your post about Letrozole and Cholesterol. I have been on Tamoxifen for 5 years and then Letrolzole for 6 years I was diagnosed at 41. I too have high cholesterol and as I was not tested before staring the letrozole I don’t know if that is the cause. I have recently been back to my lipid specialist and it was still 6.9 and they increased my statin dose to 20mg which I am not happy about.  I have looked at the forum today as my oncologist has advised me to stop letrozole treatment as of today ( I had put off asking about it as I knew that would be the advice) and I was a worried losing my safety net. I saw that you too had stopped and wondered how you feel now. I feel it is a good thing but in particular my husband is worried about it coming back. I am lucky in that the letrozole really didn’t give me too many side affects apart from aching bones. However I am hoping that my cholesterol may now come down. It seems that yours is still high and if it was the letrozole you would have thought it would have come down by now as you stopped taking it in April. It’s interesting that the 2 lipid specialists I have seen did not know about the letrozole side effects so I feel no one really knows why it may have an effect. I was hoping that my cholesterol will come down after stopping the letrozole but maybe that won’t happen. I too eat quite healthily but I am trying to lose weight and exercise more. Your tip about aerobic exercise I will take on board too. I am to go back and have my cholesterol checked again in about a months time after stopping the letrozole so it will be interesting to see if it changes.

Best wishes


I have high cholesterol, fit slim healthy diet etc. I take letrozole, mine went up to 8.2! Onc does’nt seem concerned! so I asked for my carrotid arteries to be checked for evidence of plaque build up. You have them ultrasounded. For a woman of my age (53) I should show signs of a little plaque build up, but in actual fact I haven’t got any whatsoever !!! the consultant said, “whatever you are doing, keep doing it”!