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Letrozole fatigue depression?


Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hey lovely 

Well speaking of depression I was on anti depressant tablets before my diagnosis so had low mood before that and with me I find it hard that sometimes if I got fatigue or not or its generally cancer making me tired xxx


Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hello Annie, 


Good point. I really do agree with you regarding physical activity/the impact of exercise.  They do say exercise can impact on mental health/brain chemicals although I don't think they are totally clear on the exact interplay just yet.


When I went through clinical depression (or mental torture as I call it, and not BC related) some years ago,  I refused medication. I  looked into other ways of managing, including physical activity.  That is when I also joined a gym, got into resistance training, back into swimming etc.  I felt it really helped.  It gave me an outlet for anxiety build up, routine, a focus, a sense of achievement, social interaction and new experiences.  Very economical considering I used the facilities 5 to 6 times a week. It took me 6 months to feel the clouds lifting. 


I cannot do now what I used to do before cancer treatment but I still plod on and do what I can. I might not be able to run but my biceps and triceps are pretty nifty for a woman in her late 50s.....💪

Best wishes to you Annie and everyone else, 

Chick 🐥 x

Community Champion

Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hi Katygran, what a super reply you’ve had from Chick. I don’t think there’s anything else to add, really. Just sending you a hug, and letting you know that your experiences and feelings are common. Its taken 2 years for me to normalise my treatments, but I was offered, and accepted, help from the psychological services. I was taught a few little tricks to manage my periods of depression. My biggest  game changer has been joining a gym. I go religiously because it costs me money 😱, but the benefits to my emotional and physical health have been huge. Hoping you are able to find some help and advice to get you through this patch. Hugs. X


Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hello Kate, 

Sorry to hear you are a rough time.  I am not on Letrozole (Anasty for me!!) and I am not experiencing depression so I cannot answer your specific question. 


However,  whichever hormone treatment you are on,  depression (in the clinical sense rather than just feeling a bit fed up etc) is a recognised possible common side effect. If you check the Patient Information Leaflet (PIL) , it should be stated.  It is not surprising that it can be a side effect of oestrogen depletion due to oestrogen's interplay with brain chemicals.   It is not unusual for some women to experience depression on approach,  during and after the menopause, never mind hormone therapy to kick the boot in even more. 


Of course,  depression can occur irrespective of hormone treatment.  Cancer diagnosis,  treatment and living with the aftermath can all takes its toll at some stage or another, never mind all the other factors in life that can kick it off. 


If you find the side effects are concerning you,  perhaps discuss with breast care nurse/oncologist/gp and review the situation and/or alternatives with them before throwing in the towel so to speak.  They may indeed suggest a break to try and ascertain causation.  A number of people find taking an appropriate antidepressant suitable for them if the situation warrants it.  This obviously may not be everyone's cup of tea.  Some people find having a short break useful and then restarting or trying a different treatment.  Some people find adapting their lifestyle through diet,  activity and stress reduction can have positive effects.  And some people find stopping hormone treatment to be the right choice for them.


Whatever you decide to do,  I would just advise making an informed choice based on your individual risks and circumstances.  

Wishing you well,

Chick 🐣 x




Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hi Kate, are you on Denosumab or Zolendronic acid as well? Have searched my government (The BC cancer agency of Canada Provincial Health Authorities) website. Depression is not on the side effect list of Letrozole but Denosumab or Zolendronic acid. I usually have few days depression (abnormally worry about my SCB diagnosis) after my Zolendronic acid infusion.








Sue C
Community Champion

Re: Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hi Kate 

In my experience, side effects of letrozole come and go. Anything that I suffer with, seems to last about 6 weeks and then recovers. I've had a few occasions with depression, but they have been quite short (maybe a day or two). So I would say give it a little time and see if it improves. I can't comment on fatigue, as I have ME/CFS so always struggle with that!

Sue xx 


Letrozole fatigue depression?

Hi 6 months since end treatment lumpectomy radiotherapy been on the Letrozole 8 months.

Started with fatigue weeks after radio then the hot sweats ect

but now feeling depression as well I think it could be the Letrozole and am wondering if to carry on with it or not has anyone found sticking it out with the Letrozole the fatigue and depression lifted? Thank you all