Stiff aching joints

Hi All,

In the last week or so my joints have been getting progressively more stiff and sore. Does anyone know if this is a known side effects of one of the treatments?

At first I put it down to doing too much but I’ve been resting and it’s getting worse. Also feels worse when I’m cold.

I finished chemo in August so I wouldn’t have thought a new side effect would present now but who knows.

Hope all are well.

Jan xx

Hi Jan, I have been struggling with really sore joints since starting tamoxifen in June, my doctor is not interested and says its one of the side effects that I need to put up with!!! I am seeing my oncologist later this month for a follow up after my radiotherapy so I will speak to him then.

I am 43 trapped in a 80 year old body!!

the joys of bc after effects

take care



I am sending you a hug but I wont squeeze too tight in case I hurt you (XXXX)

I know what you mean about being young(ish) and trapped in an old body. I’m 48 and I feel like an arthritic 80 year old. Takes me 5 minutes to struggle out of a chair.

I haven’t had tamoxifen though so that can’t be causing mine. I’ve trawled all the info I can find on the treatments I’ve had but can’t find any mention of joint pain. Thought about phoning the BCN but I’m sure she thinks I’m neurotic.

Surely your doctor can at least suggest suitable pain management for yours if you’re sure it’s a side effect? My Onc believes nobody needs to put up with constant pain.

Jan xx

{{{hugs}}} jan - my first suggestion was going to be tamoxifen… did you have docetaxol / taxotare? that gave me dreadful joint problems…


I did Theresa and it gave me joint pain at the time too come to think of it but I thought (hoped) I’d left that behind. Ha! silly me.

Jan xx

i was told that if you had a previous week point the chemo was likely to highlight it in the future… for example my left knee keeps aching… but that is the knee i twisted badly a few years ago when i fell on a snowy day…

and i am having problems with my left shoulder - having to have exercises for it… but my mum suffered from a frozen shoulder from her mid 50’s and my brother is also now getting frozen shoulder problems (he is 57…) i think the chemo has just made a family trait appear in me at a younger age…

Hi all Jan I too have very stiff and aching joints but mine did not start untill about six to eight weeks after chemo finished.So I thought it must not be related.At first I found that if I sat or laid down for a while I seemed to have seized up and couldn’t get my joints going again. I would have to walk very slowly untill my stiffness relaxed. My oncologist was not at all surprised and said that it was but that chemo turns us into old ladies before our time. She suggested swimming but its not always easy to find time or inclination.It has got a little easier six months down the line but no great improvement. Sorry i can’t be more positive and tell you it will go away. take care kittyx

hello every aching lady, I started R.T. & Femara at the same time so dont know what to blame my aches and pains on,dont think MX would cause aching hips & groins but blame my sore shoulder on the surgery. My onc.doc said its a combination of all of it,the nurse on the help line said it was more likely to be the chemo. Ive had some physio today and she suggested swimming but I pointed out that unless the water was really warm,it would do more harm than good. She said to ring the pool,explain Ive been ill and ask can I use the kiddys pool without a child,might just do that since I paid a fortune for my
mastectomy cossy,any of you in Manchester want to come with me?

Hi Jan
Everytime I mention about my aches and pains in joints I am told “what do you expect, it takes a long time to get over all the treatment you’ve had”.

So, mine started after the 1st taxotere, and although slightly easier now a year later since finishing, I still have one achey knee joint and my finger joints are quite bad, stiff and achey. I put up with it hoping it will get better, although because of my age 51, I also think that it could be “that time” of my life and no, not the dirty dancing one - LOL! I didn’t have any hormonals as I was HER2+. I think basically the whole combination is a minefield.

Hope you find an answer, but as you see you are not alone so hope it eases any worries.

Woody, I know what you mean about a warm swimming pool, I have physio sessions which include a hydrotherapy pool, but in France they seem to think 23 degrees is warm enough - not for me certainly, I get out feeling so cold I am sure it does more harm than good. I am just an English weakling maybe.

Take care ladies Carole xx

I’ve only just finished chemo (did I mention that already? lol!) so maybe too early to say. After my 1st Taxotere, I had dreadful aches but more muscular that joints. Drove me nuts and I didn’t sleep for more than half an hour at a time.

I got some blow your head off painkillers in the shape of Solapdol and they were magnificent. Didn’t really gets the aches much after the 2nd dose - not sure whether that was due to be downing the tablets as soon as I thought the aches were starting.

And having just finished the 3rd and final dose, it’s too early to say. However, I will say that I would be more inclined to leave the house without knickers than my Solpadol these days :wink: Just in case!

None of this malarkey on FEC!!!

Ah yes, also meant to say (and now you will think I’m nuts!) that when our family dog got arthritis and could hardly walk, Mum started giving him Cod Liver Oil and it was wonderful for him - really got his movement back.

No idea how Cod Liver Oil could mix with any chemo or other drugs, so probably best check with nurse/onc/doc first but thought it worth a mention. Even though you are not dogs, or have arthritis!!!

lol Pash, your posts do make me laugh! just to say though too that my 1st docetaxel was very painful, so for this 2nd one i got myself armed with codiene, and guess what? … i didnt need it. I dont know why and i aint complaining but the pain was nowhere near as bad.

I finished chemo Nov 2008 and rads in Jan 2009. I had aching joints and a sore back during my treatment and simply put it down to the fact that I was having all these drugs and not hitting the gym very often.However, I’ve now been diagnosed with osteoporosis and have been told that Tamoxifen and the steroids I had during treatment can be contributory factors.Don’t ignore aches and pains,get them checked out.

Hi there all,only yesterday my surgeon said there was no harm in taking cod liver oil also glucosamine,and I`m going all the way and taking Co-enzyme Q10 200mg,in for a penny eh?

Hi Anna - Glad I make you larf! I am convinced laughter is one of the greatest healers, so keep at it! x

Hi Woody - that’s good news - I might start on the cod liver as a re-emptive measure, then.

Hi all Pash its a funny old world isn’t it we started to give out old arthritic mut omega 3 fish oil for his aches and pains and they certainly did the trick. About ten days ago i joined him on two 500mg capsules a day[well he had a big bottle] so far no difference but will let you know.take care kittyx

Hi Girls

I started femara in June and the really bad joint pains started just after, to the point that we seriously thought I might have to apply for a blue badge.

With the knowledge of my onc I started Glucosamine, and cod liver oil cpsules. I also stopped wearing flat shoes and changed to those with a small heal. It has made an emormous difference and I can again walk some distance with no pain. It has also helped with the aches in my thumbs and fingers although not completely eradicated the problem there.

Good luck


Thanks for all the tips ladies. No hope then that it will all just go away. Ah well… at least I’m not alone, nor am I a hypochondriac.

Pash, I take it that Taxotere hasn’t made you lose control of your bowels yet if you’re prepared to leave the house without your knickers. You may laugh. I did… eventually. It happened to me while walking the dog on the local golf course. Wouldn’t go anywhere without my knickers now. Abandoned the dog and headed straight for the loo to clean up when I got home. When I came out the muddy dog was sitting on my lovely white duvet with a big grin on his face.

Off to the supermarket now to get some glucosamine. We already give those to our dog too but I don’t think the dosage is as strong as the people ones.

Jan xx

Jan - thanks for asking and for the sake of others feeling sane, I can report that I do have quite a shitty bum! No loss of control yet and got some prescription version of Imodium which stops the cramps and keeps it manageable, though still incredibly ‘fragrant’.

I shouldn’t laugh at your story, but I did. Apologies.

What a great forum, where we can share our nutty, happy, sad, stressy and off the wall experiences with this IBC malarkey. Glad I found you all.

Off to see the fireworks now, and hope I don’t put on my own explosive show!!!

See y’all soon x

I hope everyone enjoyed the fireworks. I love them but my poor pooch is terrified. He lay across my lap last night panting and shaking. He kept me warm with his furry coat, which eased my aching joints so it wasn’t all bad. He then got hubby out of bed at 4am to let him out for a pee. Serves him right for not taking the dog out before it got dark.

Have a good weekend.

Jan xx