Tamoxifen and side effects. Different brands.....??

I started Tamoxifen in August 2012 with some trepidation and was pleasantly surprised that for the three months that I was on Teva brand I had no side effects whatsoever.
Having read on these forums that different brands can give different side effects I was worried when I was told by my pharmacist that Teva was not available. I was given Relon and found that on that brand that my skin itched,especially my scalp (you would have thought I had head lice I was scratching that much)! Even so, not too great a problem. Ok, I’m all right with that.
Next month onto Wockhart. 9 days of taking this and I’ve got gastric problems. Trapped wind. I’ll put this politely,all I needed was to pass wind, either upwards or downwards! Diet was as usual so thought the tablets might be to blame. Stopped them for four days, in that time I recovered. Restarted them and now after 11days back on the tablets I’ve got the same symptoms . Will not be taking the tablet tonight.

Is this a coincidence? Or is it a side effect? Anyone else had this problem with Wockhart?

Bump to get this into latest posts.

I had Wockhart for first 3 months. I had exactly the same windy problems you describe, for first few weeks. I used to get the same thing for a couple of days mid-cycle, so I assumed it was just the particular balance of hormones. I took the tablet with a little food at bedtime and followed it down with a couple of Rennie’s. The tummy explosions stopped long before I switched brands (not had Wockhart since) but I still get the occasional problem with wind. Maybe our bodies need to get used to it?

Picked up new prescription today. For 1st time it’s in chemist’s own plain box so I thought “hello! What now?! :(” But inside were several small strips of Relon - so at least all the same this time!

Hi Foxyferret
I always haev the Wockhart brand which seems to suit me really well (so far anyway!). I’m sorry you have had to change brands, especially as the Teva suited you better. Have Teva stopped making them or is it that your pharmacist couldnt get hold of them that particular month? Might be worth checking out?
I’m not sure that its a good idea to stop and start taking the Tamoxifen. That would worry me more than coping with the side effects, so it might be worth persevering with other brands until you find one which suits you better?
Hope you get sorted out soon
Best wishes
Joan xx


Wockhart - no likey! Had them at the beginning and felt awful so got onto APS which were great. Unfortunately they are no longer available so about to start TEVA.
I foung with my my independant chemist and Boots were very accomodating and always got APS for me. Hope you get settled ok

Cathie x

Thank you very much for your replies ladies.
I have stocked up today with every remedy, both natural and chemical, known to man!! Once fully recovered I shall be taking steps to prevent it occurring again, rather than trying to cure it.Today I’ve had to resort to painkillers and so feel ok at the moment.
Patchit, I agree that stopping and starting Tamoxifen is not good but had to find out if it was the tablets and not something in my diet. I will persevere with it, I’ve got to take it.

I will also visit Drs. and start being more assertive in trying to get Teva. Failing that Relon - I’d rather itch than have this pain.

P.S. Peppermint and Fennel tea tastes disgusting!!!

JCJ - meant to say that I thought your idea of taking the tablet with Rennies as a chaser was brilliant. Will be trying that.

I found that certain things: raw onions and raw peppers especially, cause me more windy problems, so I avoid them now. It’s a shame because I love a bit of pepper in a salad, but it’s just not worth the discomfort!!

I can recommend Rennies, but they don’t help everyone.

Quick update…been to talk to my lovely pharmacist today. Teva is still unavailable but he had some Relon in stock so gave me those instead of the Wockhart.
Phew, I’m so relieved. It will be back to the itches but that’s better than this awful pain and I shall try anti-histamines.

That’s good news FF. I can recommend swimming to aleviate itching - especially upside-down! Whoops! wrong thread! :slight_smile:

Hi All
I have been on tamox for 4 years with very few SE’s up until 2 months ago. The pharmacy suddenly changed the brand from APS to Relon and since then I have suffered severe joint pain and headaches, itchey scalp, night sweats and have been very emotional. At first I thought the onset of these symptoms meant the cancer was back but it suddenly dawned on me that it’s the brand change. After reading this post I will be visiting the pharmacy tomorrow to ask for a return to APS!
Kirsten x

Only just seen this, hence the late response!
Like a number of other women out there I didn’t get on with Wockhardt Tamoxifen and found APS much better.
For info for all you APS fans out there, Teva branded and APS branded Tamoxifen are the same. Teva took over APS several years ago but continued to produce Tamoxifen under the APS brand. More recently (last year?) they started to produce it as Teva. With much research and a helpful pharmacist I found that the ingredients, including the non-active ones, are exactly the same in both brands, and I find it makes no difference to me which of those two brands I take.
However, for some reason it has been difficult, if not impossible to get hold of either brand in the 20mg size tablets for the last few months. It might be worth asking for 2 lots of 10mg tablets instead, my helpful pharmacist has been managing to get those for me although she still can’t get the 20mg ones.

Although I’m not on Tamoxifen I was on Arimidex up until recently and the same issue came up about different brands and how the side effects are worse with some. We had a very long thread about this some time ago and many ladies pointed out that the active ingredient is the same, so why should the tablets cause different problems. However a good analogy would be the Technical Challenge on The Great British Bakeoff: same ingredients, same outline method, 10 different results! That wasn’t just my words a friends oncologist explained it that way to her.

I compared all the ingredients in about 5 different brands, this was for Letrozole, and the difference seemed to be in the coating, something the first drug company who made Letrozole, Femara didn’t include. My Onc told me that he was having problems with some GPs who insisted that the cheaper version was prescribed, my Onc said that if the cheaper version had a significant effect on the quality of life of the patient whilst taking it with the side effects then Femara should be prescribed.
I have problems with Letrozole but I have found that Teva is okay and I am happy to stay on it for the final year of hormone treatment.

[color=#faa0e0]Thanks for that Cheshire! I’m taking the Relon brand at the moment which is better than WH but my legs really ache. When I mentioned the aching joints etc to the Specialist her response was that it was unlikely to be Tam as “that is not a known side effect”, I think we would beg to differ! Need a new prescription so will see if the Pharmacist can source the 10gm Teva for me.
[color=#faa0e0]For those who are interested, I recently read and article about Jennifer Saunders which mentioned low serotonin levels and so I did some research and found some that suggests that Tam can affect serotonin levels, one of the symptoms is depression. If you want to know more google serotonin deficiency, there are lots of foods you can eat to boost it, I have found it has made a big difference to my moods which were affected by the Relon in the beginning.
Daisygirl xx

I have been having acupuncture for the dreaded hot flushes and it seemed to be working but two days on Wockhart instead of Generics and they are back - could it be the brand change or just bad luck?


I have been adviced by my McMillan nurse to go onto Nolvadex (Tamoxifen).

But none of my local chemists stock it.

Can anyone help?

Is it still being made?



Please can anyone who has changed tomoxifen brand due to acute anxiety please can you let me know if your anxiety symptoms decreased and what brand you used. I am really suffering with this thank you 

Hi Q,I haven’t myself but I have read posts from others on the Forum who have had relief from anxiety from changing brands,definitely worth a try ,what brand are you on ,some seem a lot worse than others.

If that’s true it’s not good at all.I have had no trouble getting Teva brand ordered by local
Boots so far,they put on my repeat prescription "Teva brand only ".Someone said you can ask G.P to specify brand on prescription too.