HElp with side effects Verzenios 150mg and Femara (upset bowels)

Hello everyone,

I have a question regarding the side effects of the medicine ‘Verzenios’ and ‘Femara’ that my mom is experiencing.

A year ago my mom has been diagnosed with breast cancer. All lymph nodes in the armpit were removed (there were 9 infected lymph nodes). This resulted in a verry heavy and aggressive treatment: removing of the tumor and lymph nodes, going trough 6 months of weekly chemo, and now medication treatment:

The diagnosis was HER2 negative and hormone positive.

  • She takes two tablets ‘Verzenios 150mg’ a day (that makes 300mg). There needs to be an interval of 10 to 12 hours in-between taking the tablets. This for a period of 2 years.
  • She also has to take a ‘Femara’ tablet, once a day. This for the period of 10 years.

The problem my mom has been experiencing for months now is almost everyday diarrhea. According to the oncologist this is because of the medication…probably the ‘Verzenios’ since it’s the highest dosage they can give.

The oncologist now said that if the diarrhea does not stop or atleast lessens she will have to lower the Verzenios dosage to 100mg in the hopes this will make her upset bowels better. At the same time stating that she actually needs the 150mg just to make sure and she prefers not to do it.

The oncologist did not have any specific tips or solutions to actually do something about the diarrhea other than taking ‘Motilium instant’.

I was hoping if maybe someone could give any tips or maybe hear from people going trough the same treatment and how they deal with the upset stomach and diarrhea witch is a common side effect.

My mom is almost like a prisoner in her own home not being able to go outside since sometimes she has the hurry to make it to the toilet. It’s gotten to the point that she’s afraid to go outside. For obvious reasons she’s also very afraid that the oncologist will lower the Verzenios dosage.

Can someone please maybe give us some tips or tell is how and if someone has solved the puzzle to successfully getting rid of the diarrhea whilst on this medication or maybe atleast make it less.

Kind regards and thank you for your time.

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I’m sorry to hear about your mum. The diarrhea unfortunately is a common side effect from Verzenios. I started it in March - 150mg twice a day like your mum and for the same reasons. My oncologist prescribed loperamide and I need to take 2 pills after the first diahrrea and then 1 pill after each diahrrea. For me, usually I get diahrrea in the morning about 2h after taking Verzenios. I take 2 pills of loperamide and then I’m fine during the day (no more diahrrea). I have diahrrea about every 2 days. My oncologist also prescribed me Immodium lingual acute. She told me that if after taking 2 pills of loperamide I still have diahrrea during the day then I can try to switch to immodium lingual acute which apparently works faster and if you take after the 1st diahrrea you avoid having more during the day. For me taking 2 pills of loperamide works so I haven’t try yet immodium lingual but I have it in my purse in case of emmergency. Maybe your mother can ask her oncologist about that… I also read in other posts in this forum that lowering the dose does not decrease the efficacy and a lot of women end up lowering to 100mg or 50mg… in my case like your mum I will try to continue with 150mg but if this affects too much my quality of like I will ask to decrease the dose.
I wish your mum all the best.

Hello, yes im on the same drugs with those side effects. I have a repeat prescription of immodium and can take up to 8 a day which does help, but doesnt resolve it. The urgency can be acute even if ive taken loads of immodium (just as urgent just not as loose).

I have found that although after a year of trying different things i havent solved it, i do feel less troubled by it. I use immodium/weetabix like uppers and downers around me leavinb the house, as the safest thing to be is “empty”.

So for example if im going out of the house in a morning i take my dose and trust that i will have to rush to the loo within the hour, or if not i have weetabix and a coffee to prompt things, then let nature quickly take its cpurse , then take 2 immodium and leave the house feeling empty and less risk of accidents.

I rarely go anywhere without quick access to a loo, and i got a radar key.

Ive not been able to return to my old job yet becaude of this (as i was out on the road a lot) but im adapting my life and activity around it whilst i can take this amazing drug.

Despite my efforts it is still hit and miss, but trying to make the most of lewving the house when i feel as empty as poss plus adding in immodium at that point is my best tip.

Sending hugs, Julie

Hi, I find having kefir daily helps my diarrhoea. It improves the gut microbes. I also use loperamide when needed.

Thank you everybody for replying and giving some tips. She is going to go to a diet/food specialist…hopefully he will be able to give some more tips on trying to minimise the diarrhea. If i get some helpfull info i’ll make sure to share.

Kind regards

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