Considering stopping Exemestane medication

Hi, I have been taking Exemestane since October 2023 & have recently returned to my full time employment. I’m really struggling with brain fog & lethargy & am considering whether I should stop taking the medication. My score on predict is a less than 3% benefit & I’m wondering if the short & long term side effects are worth it. Is it useful to have a break from the medication to make sure it is causing my symptoms & if so, how long a break is helpful?

Hello Mich1329

Thank you for posting your question. If sounds like a difficult time for you as you are having some side effects from taking exemestane.

We hear from many people who experience symptoms such as brain fog (cognitive impairment) and lethargy or fatigue whilst taking hormone therapies, such as exemestane. These side effects can often improve over time, so you may find that they get better over the next few months. However, it sounds as though they are impacting your daily life and making your return to work difficult to cope with.

If you have not done so already do talk to your breast care nurse or treatment team about how you are feeling and before stopping the exemestane, so they can support you. Some people do take a short break from the medication, to see if the symptoms improve. Your treatment team may discuss alternative hormone therapies, if this is appropriate. You mention that your predict benefit from hormone therapy is less that 3%, so you wonder if the side effects are worth it. This is a very individual decision and your treatment team will be able to help to weigh up the risks and benefits with you, based on your individual circumstances.

You may find our information about work and breast cancer helpful. You can also find some information and support through the organisation Working With Cancer.

You may also find our Moving Forward courses helpful.

Do call our helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. The helpline team have time to listen, talk things through and signpost you to more support and information if necessary. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks. The number is 0808 800 6000, (Relay UK - prefix 18001).

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Best wishes

Cassie

Breast Care Nurse

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