Tamoxifen+Zoladex- 33 yr old- pregnancy

Hi all,
I have been diagnosed with grade 2 breast cancer late June this year and had a lumpectomy early July. Luckily my lymph nodes were clear and the margin around the tumour was clear too. I have strongly oestrogen positive breast cancer (8/8) and just had my first appointment with my oncologist. He’s suggesting 3 weeks of radiotherapy with boosters and tamoxifen and zoladex injections. Because I will be 33 in october was planning to start a family next year I’ve been told I should take the Tamoxifen and Zoladex for at least 2 years. Now I’ve just got home from the appointment all sorts of questions are racing through my head. Will the hormone treatments still have an effect after 2 years or will it only protect me during those 2 years? He also said it’s up to me to decide if I want to take the Zoladex injections as they will stop my periods completely. Has anyone been in this situation at all? Apparently I also need to wait 6 months to a year after the hormone therapy to try and get pregnant so it’s all properly flushed out of my system. Since me and my boyfriend were so ready to try and tart a family now I can’t help but think that it is such a long wait. I know it’s a “luxury problem” since so many of you are much worse off than me but I would love to hear your experiences and thoughts. Has anyone ever heard of taking a break from Tamoxifen to try and get pregnant and then continue Tamoxifen afterwards or is that just a crazy idea?
Much love to you all xx

Hi Tiddles!

I’m 33 and was just trying for children when I was diagnosed in June.

I’ve had to have chemo, so that’s my biggest worry re my fertility, but if I do retain my fertility I’ll be in the same position as you. And it’s such a tricky question!! My oncologist has also said that I could come off Tamoxifen after a couple of years - but as I have a large lump and lymph nodes invovled and therefore a higher chance of secondaris/recurrance I would be worried about coming off early and then regretting later on that I didn’t do all I could to keep the cancer at bay and there are rather upsetting stories on here from people wo decided against certain treatments and came off early got pregnant, but then developed secondary cancer and now don’t know how much time they’ll have with thier children. So, if I do retain my fertility, I think I will stick to the 5 years (due to my aggressive tumour) and then would be 40 by the time I’d be in the position to start trying for children.

I find this all rather upsetting as thought I would be pregnant this year!

I haven’t heard of anyone who’s had Tamoxifen and then a break to get pregnant and then continued, but do know one girl who had a break to have eggs harvested and then continued.

I say this now - but when it comes to my turn to make the decision I will most definitely be getting a couple of opinions and would suggest that maybe you do too? And maybe see a fertility expert to assess your fertility now and to ask their advice. People on here can share their experiences and stories which can certainly help - but all of our cancers and situations are so different. Also, my onc said to wait 2-3 months after coming off Tamoxifen. So you might get differing opinions on that too.

Good luck with your decision.

x

Hello Tiddles,

Things may have moved on for you by now as your post was a while ago, but I recall that when discussing Tamoxifen (with and without Zoladex) and having another child, they said it would be poss to take the Tamfn for 2 years, try to get pregnant and, after the birth, another 3 years of Tamoxifen. My diagnosis was similar to yours.

HOpe that helps,

Claire2010

my cancer was 8/8 for both hormones and i was told it was prob my 2nd pregnancy that caused it. if you are 8/8 for hormones a pregnancy will cause a surge in these hormones and really isnt a good idea.

I am confused by the pregnancy thing as my surgeon said that statistics show no evidence of pregnancy increasing the risk of a recurrence.
I have also read that the type of oestrogen produced during pregnancy (estriol) is a different type from the oestrogen that is related to hormone positive breast cancer (estradiol).

2 more radiotherapy treatments for me and I’m done. Seeing my oncologist tomorrow so will ask him some more questions.

4 weeks on tamoxifen and no major side effects so far but start zoladex in 2 days so we’ll see what that brings.

Hi Tiddles,

Welcome to the Breast Cancer Care discussion forums, I’m sure you’ll get lots of good support from the many informed users of this site.

Could I suggest you give the helpline here a ring and have a chat with one of the staff about your concerns, they’re here to support you through this. Calls to the helpline are free, as are all BCC’s publications. Lines are open now until 5pm (Mon-Fri 9-5 & Sat 9-2) 0808 800 6000.

You may also find it useful to look at posts in the Younger Women’s area of these forums as pregnancy and BC is discussed there quite frequently.

I have also put you the link to BCC’s publication aimed at younger women.
www2.breastcancercare.org.uk/publications/diagnosed-breast-cancer/younger-women-breast-cancer-bcc66

Hope these help. Take care,
Jo, Facilitator