Dry, breaking hair and hair loss. Is it anastrozole or stress from all the trauma?

Hi ladies,

I have suffered from dry, breaking and thining hair for the last 4 weeks. Is it caused by the trauma of diagnosis and treatment which began 4 months ago or is it just the anastrozole side effects?  My Onc has told me to stop anastrozole for a month to see how it goes.  I don’t think that a month is long enough for my hair to recover.

I don’t think that it is caused by treatment alone.  I had two lumpectomies and 15 rads which I finished 10 days ago and I sailed through those with no tiredness and only a slightly pink boob.

Have any other ladies who have not had chemo suffered with hair loss?


Thinning hair, breaking/flaky nails, mood swings, flushes, any or all of these can be associated with this drug but for me the most distressing side effect has been joint pain to the extent that I can hardly make it upstairs now. Have had to give up sport and recreational walking. Of course you may not experience all the above, but certainly thinning hair is quite common. Of course some lucky ladies don’t have any adverse reactions.  I agree that a 1 month trial period isn’t very long to ascertain whether it is the tablets causing it, but I’m sure your breastcare nurse will monitor your progress and I hope you manage to resolve and/or alleviate this distressing side effect. It’s enough to contend with having the diagnosis and treatment without having these awful reactions too. Keep telling myself it’s “only” another 3.5years of treatment to go but feel I’ve aged 30years in the last 18 months.

Best wishes, PoppyJ

Hi Eileen. I’ve mentioned this in another post but my hair is awful on Anastrozole and for me it’s the worst side effect. In fact only tonight I was blow drying it and it just looks like candyfloss (not pink tho!). Before I was diagnosed I was on HRT which for me was a wonder drug. I’d never felt better. Lovely thick shiny hair and skin and nails. Now I feel like I’ve been sucked dry. Obviously receiving cancer news is very ageing in as much as you worry constantly, don’t eat properly, can’t sleep and then the surgery and all this has an adverse effect on health. However my hair has definitely got worse since the tablets but for me I’m sticking with them as its a small price to pay for keeping recurrences at bay - hopefully. I’ll be very Interested to hear how you get on if you stop and re start. C.