oestrogen receptive cancer has spread

Hi my mother in law was diagnosed with breast cancer around 2 years ago. She had a lumpectamony and radiotherapy and seemed to be all clear. That is until last month when we received the news that she has a new lump in her breast and further scans have also shown she has cancer on her ovaries and lower back. Although she now has these secondary cancer she is not having any surgery or chemo as apparently she has a level 8 oestrogen based cancer so the doctors are saying that the hormonal therapy stopping the oestrogen supply will be enough to stop it all. oh and she is having one big does of radiotherapy again on her lower back.

Im in a hard place as my own mother died of breast cancer when i was 7 and she was only 41, my step aunt died of it and numerous other people i know have so i find it very hard to believe that simply taking a tablet will stop it all. Will it? Has anyone been in this situation and survived


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June, moderator

Just bumping this up…

Hello fire cracker
I’m really sorry to read how tough things are for your family. I was thinking you could maybe go with your mum in law to talk to her breast care nurse and ask her to explain how it would all work. Although I’m a second timer with oestrogen positive breast cancer, I don’t know enough to give you a proper answer, and of course you mum in law’s nurse knows about her particular situation. Another contact who could help in a more general way might be the nurses at breast cancer care.
I hope things go well
take care
monica x

Hi…yes I have been in a similar position to your Mother in law in that I have secondary breast cancer to my bones. A secondaries diagnosis is considered treatable, sometimes for years but sadly it’s not curable…so I’m guessing your Mother-in-law’s medical team are hoping for some long responses from her hormonal treatments especially as her cancer is so oestrogen sensitive. I’m still here and feeling well 6 years after my own stage 4 diagnosis. I’m now on my first chemo. I had several years of hormonal treatments, Tamoxifen then Arimidex and had long periods of remission so for some of us the tablets work well in controlling any spread and slowing down any progression. I’m currently in remission at the moment. I’m so sorry to read you lost your Mum to breast cancer at such a young age. Take Care.x.and Good Luck to your Mother in law.x.

Hi everyone, just been reading through everyone’s comments and I’m now getting scared. I had a lumpectomy beg of Sept. and am on Arimidex and starting 3 week course of radiotherapy in 2 weeks. Suppose I just assumed once treatment finished, I would be ok. Can you ever be really free of cancer once it has been diagnosed? Can I have some good news please as the Arimidex is making me quite low and miserable at the moment.

Everyones cancer is different. Although oncologists can give you statistics about the likelyhood of recurrence this is not always what happens.I am a year on from treatment for IDC grade 3 ER +++and had 8 chemos, 20 rads. I was on arimidex for a year but as you mention Granola I felt so low and depressed on it that I came off it. I am now tamoxifen which for me has less side effects. Persist with the arimidex for a bit longer but if at all worried speak to your BCN or oncologist. You have only recently been diagnosed so no wonder you are scared. i was too. Just take a day at a time and only read what you can cope with. There is alot of information about bc and only some of it will be relevent to you.

Take care