Femara and amitryptilene

Have just been prescribed Amitryptilene by my GP. Reading the blurb I see some reference to it affecting hormones and am, of course , worrying that perhaps that might affect the Femara I have to take. Anyone else been prescribed it? I think this panicking about everything must be a side effect of breast cancer!


I have been on amitriptline for over 5 years whilst on tamoxifen and I have been on Femara for a month and am still taking it. I was told that it was okay to be on it whilst on Tamoxifen and I have to say that I haven’t asked about it re Femara. I use amitriptyline as a pain killer and to help me sleep although I was pretty low when having chemo which was why my GP suggested it. In higher doses it is anti-depressant but I am only on 50g a night and it is apparently non-addictive.

I will ask the question when I have my next review with my GP.
Hope that helps


Hi Hazel,
Im just 1 week into an 8 year course of Femara after mastectomy on 6th May,had a little nausea plus diarrhoea one day,dont really know if its the tablet that caused it. Im wondering why Ive been put straight on this and not Tamoxifen, is Femara the "new improved" version of Tamoxifen? My surgeons comment was “its`very well tolerated with very few side effects”.
cheerio,love Mags x

I have been taking femara for over a year now …I have secondaries in my liver. i have had no problems apart form the sweats. i am also on an anti-depressant …venalaflaxine

Hello Mags

Just to give you a bit of my history, had WLE coming up to 6 years ago and out of 17 nodes removed 6 were affected which meant chemo and rads for 5 weeks. From then 5 years of Tamoxifen and apart from the weight gain which I take a bit of a responsibity for because we can all comfort eat in times of stress, worry etc and its easy not to exercise. Anyway last year at the 4 year marker my Onc said that he was going to put me on Arimidex for 3 years. When I went see him in March this year he said it was going to be Femara and when I look them up I think they are quite similiar, they are part of a group of drugs called aromatase inhibitors. Now all the time I was having treatment, chemo etc my Onc didn’t really want to hear about side affects but at our meeting in March he mentioned the aches and pains. He said that tests had proved that 3 years of Femara after Tamoxifen have proved beneficial in preventing the cancer from returning. I am pleased to say that at present - touch wood, apart from the hot flushes which I wasn’t really having with Tamoxifen I haven’t really had any other side effects but its been only 5 weeks or so.

When I first started treatment Tamoxifen was the “gold star” treatment but that was 6 years ago and treatment is getting better and better so with regards to whether Femara is better than Tamoxifen I can’t really say.

Sorry to have made it a bit long winded and I’m sure that you will get some advice from other posts re Femara and Tamoxifen

Take care


hi Hazel,
anyone who replies to me and talks in years of treatment brings such
relief to me. Thanks for your info,it was most helpful,my worry now is girls who are posting to say Femara is unavailable at the chemists,are we at war with the country that makes this drug?
RE:sweats,my menopause flushes & sweats ended on chemo then came back with a vengeance in the 5 weeks between chemo and mastectomy so cant blame femara for that.
Cheerio, love Mags

HI Hazel

Thanks for your reply. It does reassure me a bit but is your cancer er+? When at the clinic recently I asked about taking amitryptilene and was told no more than 10mg which is only half what my GP prescribed. Now I am nervous to take it at all but it had been a real help with headaches and insomnia.

Hello Sarcath

I am ER+ and after reading your post I have asked my GP when I went to see him last week and he said that it was fine to take with Femara with amitriptyline. I have been on amitriptyline for over 5 years now and take 50mg each night. If you see your GP soon I would ask him. I am going to ask my surgeon when I go for my check up in October.

Take care


Hi Sarcath, I too am also on femara and amitryptilene. I take 30mg each night to help with headaches, insomnia and general aches and pains! My GP is quite happy for me to be taking it alongside femara. It is on my hospital notes what medication I am taking, so I
assume my consultant is aware, but like Hazel will ask when I next see him, I am also er+. Sorry I can’t be any more help, maybe we could ask bcc if they have any information regarding femara and amitryptilene.

Best wishes
Tracey x

Hi Moonshine

I have put for you below the link to BCC’s publication on Femara but would suggest that you give the helpline a ring regarding Amitryptilene.

Femara fact sheet: breastcancercare.org.uk/server/show/nav.718/changeTemplate/PublicationDisplay/publicationId/122

Kind regards
Jo, Facilitator

Thank you Jo