Tamoxifen & Zoladex - please help me decide!

Tamoxifen & Zoladex - please help me decide!

Tamoxifen & Zoladex - please help me decide! Hi,

I’m 25 and fertility has been issue for me since the start of my treatment.

I have had my chemo then WLE and due to start rads at beginning of june. My onc has put me onto to Tamoxifen and yesterday suggested having Zoladex for two years aswell.

I was having Zoladex injections throughout my chemo to help preserve feritlity and then stopped after chemo was finished - lukcily (and i never thought i’d say this as a positive) my periods have returned so it is a good sign everything is ok.

As my tumour was ostrogen + like i say my onc has asked me to go away and think about going back on zoladex for 2 years. i just wondered whether anyone else was taking this - if its a good thing or whether the combination of both can again have an effect on fertility.

My onc is ok but hard to talk to as he really isn’t that bothered about my fertility issues as he says he is there to cure me regardless of the effect on my chance to have children which is fair enough but doesn’t really help me decide.

Anyones help/opinions/experiences etc would be really appreciated.

Thanks

Kaylou x

Hi Kaylou,

I think I have replied to you before about a similar issue! I am 31 (30 when diagnosed) and am currently on combined Tamoxifen and Zoladex for 2 years. I didn’t have the Zoladex during chemo as it wasn’t offered to me and my periods didn’t stop throughout the chemo. My periods have only now stopped due to the Zoladex.

My Onc said that combined Tamoxifen and Zoladex for 2 years has the same effect as Tamoxifen for 5 years and is excellent at preserving fertility in younger women. I don’t know if this is proven with research or simply his opinion. He is also supportive of pregnancy following treatment saying that there is no evidence to suggest it is detrimental even in ER+ve cancers. I know of some Oncs who don’t take this view though.

At 30 (the stats don’t go any younger than that) you apparently have a 80 - 90% chance of resuming normal fertility following treatment.
My Onc knows that fertility was a huge issue for me pre diagnosis as I was about to have IVF. Fertility remains a huge issue and is so upsetting at times so I can completely understand where you are coming from.

I am happy with the treatment I am on and don’t suffer any adverse affects apart from minimal hot flushes. I suppose I’ll just see where I’m at when I stop the hormones and take it from there. I try not to think about it too much as I know there’s nothing I can do for 2 years anyway.

Good luck and if you want to chat some more just yell!

Carla x

same Hi I have an es+ve tumour too. And started on zoladex and chemo. My onc said two and a half years of zoladex and 5 years of tamoxifen was advised. For the best survival. Because they both deal with the oestrogen in your body. Because I am from the netherlands and it did give me a better feeling to check all options,I asked for a sec opion of a dutch onc.
He said the big bang you make in your fight agains reocc of the cancer in the es+ve tumour is (after of course the surgery) your hormonal treatment.
He adviced even 5 years of zoladex and 2 and a half years of Tamoxifen en then another two and a half years of an aromatase inhibitor.
I discussed this with my onc. and for now i will be on two and a half years of zoladex and tamoxifen and then we will see what new research tells us.
I think the best thing is to be on both to prevent the tumour coming back or spreading by suppressing your overies with Zoladex and catching the oestrogen with Tamoxifen.
I think it is advised to have a bone desitiy scan done at some stage, for osteoporosis. (which is treatable if you diagnose it early)

Baring in mind each individual case is slightly different, but I hope this is of some help.
Do not be affraid yourself to ask for a second opinion.
good luck

fertility Hi I have just realised I possibly did not answer your question at all. I just commented on the benifit of zoladex and tamoxifen in my case. But that doesn’t help you with the fertility issue. Sorry about that. I am not sure about the long term effects of this treatment but I do know there are trials. For that reason you have been on zoladex during your chemo I understand.
I so understand that it is an issue though. (I just concieved with ivf 1 year before the breastcancer)
and I wish you all the best and hope it will work out for you and your partner.

Hi Kaylou,
I’m a bit older than you as I’m in my late thirties but my tumour was also oestrogen + so like you I had Zoladex from the first chemo and I’m still having the injections nearly 2 years on. Like one of the other ladies said, it seems to normally be prescribed for 2 - 2.5 years. I will be stopping the injections fairly soon as I am hoping to have reconstruction (DIEP) in the next few months. If I wasn’t having the recon, I think I was being prescribed the Zoladex for a maximum of 2.5 years so would have carried on with it until early next year otherwise.
Re the Tamoxifen, I have been taking that for about a year and apart from occasional hot flushes, I’m absolutely fine.
If I were you, I’d take both options for the timebeing and see how you feel further down the line.

All the very best,
BethXX

zoladex report Hi there - I’ve just read this, and thought it might be of interest:
news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6667313.stm