Transdermal HRT after DCIS

Hello all, my first post here.

Following treatment last year, I am about to have a much belated final call with my oncologist on Wednesday.

All along, I was told that my DCIS was not oestrogen fed, therefore I would be able to continue my HRT (Evorel/Conti patches). Then, my oncologist told me last November that there was not enough evidence either way to support or refute the continuation of my HRT. 

The Royal College of Gyneacologists do not advocate any kind of HRT after breast cancer (I had a specialist app’t)

However, I read the book Oestrogen Matters by Av Bluming, who makes a strong argument for continuing HRT post breast cancer. He is an oncologist and his argument piles into the flawed WHI study that damned HRT 20 years ago, and he makes the case for the plethora of things that cause death in older women. Most of the causes of death are greatly reduced by continuing on HRT.

Frankly I have made my decision. I’m staying on and taking a risk. I’m just interested to see if there are any other people out there who have a view on this. 

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Hi,

I had hormone positive breast cancer Er8/8, Pr8/8, Her-, with also a large area of DCIS in 2014, I had a bilateral masectomy and once I hit menopause (post rather than peri) my symptoms were intolerable, night sweats all night long, hot flushes, several every hour, joint pains, low mood, lack of motivation etc, I just felt my life wasn’t worth living, I literally was just existing and ended up having to leave my job due to the fatigue. I battled with the GP’s and menopause specialists to go onto HRT, after a 4 year battle and consent from breast consultant I was put on Everol Conti patches and they were life changing. However I recently changed over to Everol 75 patch and Utrogestan as it seemed I could do with more oestrogen, as had a return of some symptoms, I wish I had just stuck with the Everol Conti as no improvement and I am now dealing with post menopause bleeding and referral back to breast clinic for skin lesion on reconstructed breast. Two 2ww referrals in less than 2 weeks! Breast clinic weren’t too worried about lesion, they think it is fat necrosis, but they biopsied just in case, results on Thursday. Even if it is bad results on Thursday I do not regret taking HRT and my thinking is that it could come back whether I take it or not, we would never know and QOL is more important to me, we all have to make our own decisions and do what feels right for us as individuals, many might think I am reckless in taking HRT. I couldn’t tolerate the tamoxifen either and only managed 9 months on it, it made me feel suicidal. My biggest fear when I went back to the breast clinic last week was that they would stop my HRT.

I have also read the book Oestrogen Matters and understand about the flawed study.

Best of luck.

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Hi Jaygo,

Thank you for your post.

I hope my response will help other members to see your post and share their experience and/or advice.

In the meantime, please remember that our nurses are here and always happy to talk things through. You can share your post here or find more information about how to contact them via phone or email here 

Sending you our best wishes,

Zoe

I had a lumpectomy for oestrogen + cancer in 2018. Like you I had horrible resurgence of menopause symptoms after coming off HRT, and got the OKto go back onto HRT. 5 yrs down the line I have been diagnosed with a new oestrogen + cancer & am awaiting a unilateral mastectomy on 22nd Nov. I’m trying to come off HRT as that seems like a sensible thing to do, but am very worries about the impact on my (and my partners) life. Very little info out there about managing sleep deprivation & night sweats !! I will get that book !! But I am stuck, trying to decide what to do if my menopausal symptoms do return. Medics are also in agreement that QoL matters, but there is also the fear of a further cancer…

My journey somewhat differs in that I have had x2 diagnoses of ER+ BC five years apart - 2015 & 2020. I’m perimenopausal still at the age of 51 & have just tolerated 3years of tamoxifen which exacerbated my perimenopausal symptoms to the degree that I started having suicidal thoughts. Quality of life for me is my primary concern going forwards. To die cancer free at the hands of myself…?! What’s the point of that?! I have also read Estrogen Matters here in the States (I’m a British expat and am navigating the US healthcare ‘system’) and am appalled by the lack of accountability in the research to date, and yet not surprised given the awful way women’s healthcare is treated both here in the US and back home in the UK (let’s face it, worldwide!) As to whether systemic HRT is right for me, the honest answer is I don’t know yet. I’ve had to fight to come off tamoxifen, I’ve had to fight to refuse anti-depressants, I’ve had to fight to be prescribed topical estrogen for vaginal use. And yet, since coming off tamoxifen my symptoms have abated greatly (no more suicidal ideation, energy back up etc) and since the topical estrogen a huge improvement with genito-urinary symptoms and less pain etc. I’m not yet menopausal and I’m hoping that research and the current palpable shift in menopausal treatment and attitudes will both inform me better as well as decrease the fight with doctors regarding MY input, MY treatment about MY body and MY life. Knowing that the best window to start systemic HRT is within 10yrs of starting menopause gives me some hope that perhaps at some point new, more reliable research will come out and i’ll be able to take to help prevent the plethora of other conditions perhaps more likely to kill me than cancer! As for my cancer coming back, that will be a risk regardless and I’d never be able to prove what the cause for its return so my focus remains on having a life worth living - to have the energy to be joyful, have pleasure, be there for my family, my friends and love life to the fullest. Much love to you, and good luck and thank you so much for the post. Such an important outreach with there being so many of us in this position.

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