Kidney/Bladder Infections

Not posted for a while as been trying to come to terms with the constant urine/kidney infections Ive been having for the last 14 months.

originally I was prescribed Arimidex, but due to the significant reduction in mobility and pain, my Onc changed me to Femara almost 18 months ago. This drug has certainly been better for me with regard to the pain and movement issues but it has certainly taken its toll on my lady bits.
I have on average 2 urine infections per month and 1 kidney infection every 2/3 months. I have seen 2 urologists, been through the gammet of tests, procedures and even the removal of kidney stones (which the urologist thought might be causing the uti’s), i have taken preventative antibiotics/urinary disinfectants/and a form of formaldahyde to try and prevent them all to no avail, with the conclusion that the urologists have said there is nothing further that can be done, apart from maybe become a nun, although some of my infections are definitely caused by sex, the vast majority are not, as it is much to painful too attempt sex anyway.

on my recent check up with oncologist I mentioned the problems I’d been having and he said that Femara was significantly harder on the lady bits than the other aromatase inhibitors due to its aggressive action on oestrogen, and the fact that I had my ovaries removed 2 years ago, make it doubly so.He has advised me to have a month off femara to see if things improve and then consider going back onto Arimidex.
I am two weeks into that month break and although things are a little better they are by no means gone.

has anyone elae been through the urinary problems with Femara? it is apparantley listed as a side effect on the drug leaflet that comes with it, but I make it a habit not to read these things or Id be too scared to take any medicines by the time I’d read all the possible side effects, lol

If so, did you find a remedy for stopping or easing the infections without stopping the Femara?

Id be so interested to hear from anyone in the same position as although Ive searched these forums and google I cant seem to find anyone who has these side effects from femara,

thanks in advance
SS

Hi,

Really feel for you, reading this post. What a miserable time you’ve been having. I’m on tamoxifen and haven’t touch wood, suffered UTIs with them, but suffered really badly years ago and it was horrible. I hope somebody comes along soon who has relevant experience and, hopefully, some top tips.

All the best

vickie
x

Hi, I’m not sure if it will be helpful but if you put ‘Femara atrophy’ into google there should be lots of search results come up. My sister had an oophorectomy because of our family history although I don’t carry the BRCA genes. The lack of oestrogen has caused her very similar problems.
Best Wishes.

stillstanding - I am on Femara and have had urinary tract problems but they are not actually infections but irritations, in my case. I try to work out which things that I eat and drink make my urine more acidic. The low oestrogen causes a thinning of the protection of the walls of the urinary tract, the bladder and the vagina, which makes us more sensitive. I try especially not to have anything which may be acidic during the evening or, if I do, to then have something alkaline to offset it. Having acidic urine overnight causes me real problems. It might be worth considering this.

I know how painful this can be. Good luck!

Ann x

im also on femera after 3 yrs on arimadex ,and have just had my first urine infection ! with all the other side effects of these drugs i sometimes wonder whether its all worth the pain etc ,but as im now coming up to my 5th year with liver spots on the decrease im too scared to come off them .i originally had lobular breast cancer and 12 lymphnode involvement .hope you can get some relief ,i drink gallons of water so its not the acid thats causing mine but deffo the femera been on it 3 months .

aroma - I have been on Femara for about 15 months. I drink lots of water all day long because I have a real thirst but this doesn’t necessarily make the urine alkaline, it just dilutes it. As I said, I still have problems. Mine are definitely not infections, as such, as confirmed by a urine sample tested at the lab.

I find that if I treat the occurrence with bicarbonate of soda in water, several times a day, I can get rid of it in a few days, depending on the severity. I sometimes get bleeding with mine and keeping the urine alkaline for this time allows it to heal.

Obviously, everyone is different and this is just what I have discovered about my problems.

Ann x