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Anastrozole and Libido

16 REPLIES 16
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Thanks maggieann, catokitty - I am a month into treatment and so far, so good. Have either of you stopped the letrozole to see if the effect on your libido was reversible? My GP assured me that it is, but I am not sure that I 100% trust her on that! She did listen to my concerns and prescribed me estriol cream to use from day 1, to try to avert any dryness.
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

My libido has vanished! Thanks for the tip. Can I buy it over the counter? Best wishes x

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

I have only just read your comments, so a little late in replying.

 

I had bc 7 years ago and was in a fairly new relationship and sex was very important.  Letrozole was the cause of sudden vaginal dryness, painful intercourse and loss of interest. 

 

I got very little help, but a gynaecologist reccommended pjur med silicone lubricant and I am still using it today! It is the best product on the market ( I tried the lot ). 

 

Good luck

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

… "dilatory" ??? - should read "dilators" … see predictive text!! x
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Pain on penetration has been a longstanding difficulty for me - not helped by diagnosis of Br Ca in June 2014 and everything subsequently associated…
Formal referral to a specialist gynae service took many months/far too long - and this is still not recognised as a problem by many doctors. Introduced me to vaginal dilatory which helped/help make sure of adequate stretchability and defused some of my tension re anticipation of pain, also use of anaesthetic lube … which has also proved helpful (believe it or not!). Along with these I have tried numerous lubricants (KY being about the least effective in my experience) - but recently found YES to be highly recommended - especially use of a small amount of oil-based (not suitable for folk needing to use condoms) plus water-based, the two together apparently producing a more prolonged lubrication which assists & satisfies both partners. YES is made of natural ingredients - google yes yes yes to find their website and view 'Yestimonials'.
I am looking forwards to finding out if this works for me - ordered but not yet tried…. Empathy and all very best wishes to everyone encountering these difficulties … you can feel so very alone … x
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Well, to answer my own question, about reversability ... I got to see my GP last week, and she said that the effects on libido are reversible if you stop the anastrozole. I don't entirely trust her to be correct, but I am giving the drug a try. I've been taking it for six days now, and so far so good!
Stocksfield
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

I'm 46 and on letrazole - just the same. Zero libido; if anything it all seems a bit revolting now. I just don't want to have to feel this way for the rest of my life. My husband is so lovely and supports me just the way I am. I just don't feel as if I'm a woman anymore. I'm a person but not really a woman.

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Hi Stocksfield

 

I have put for you below the link to BCC's publication Your body, intimacy and sex which I hope you find helpful.

 

http://www2.breastcancercare.org.uk/publications/treatment-side-effects/your-body-intimacy-sex-bcc11...

 

And also the link to the area of this website where intimacy is discussed further.

 

http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/breast-cancer-information/impact-breast-cancer/relationships-fami...

 

Take care,

Jo, Moderator

 

 

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Hi ladies,

 

I have just been prescribed an aromatase inhibitor for recurrent breast cancer, and by far my biggest worry is the risk of vaginal dryness and loss of libido. I am 55, nearly three years into the menopause, but have only been married for nine months and my husband has a very high libido. I really fear what serious damage to our sex life would do to our relationship. The question that I can't seem to find an answer to anywhere is, if I do suffer this side-effect, if I stop the drug is the effect reversible?

 

This is a *very* important questiion for me, and I hope that someone can give me an answer from personal experience.

 

Thanks,

 

C

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Hi there,
Regarding the dryness I have found a product called Sylk the best. I did try Replens but like you say it tends to ooze out & not feel very nice. My main problem is pain & now that I expect it to be painful I unconsciously tense all my muscles making matters even worse. As you say there are no real answers but I'm finding it quite comforting that at least I'm not the only one experiencing these problems & sharing tips may help at least one of us.
lbx157

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Well I guess I'm not alone. Actually, maybe I have a lot to be thankful for as I'm 64 and been married 41 years - so at least I've passed the honeymoon phase. Thanks for your replies as it does help to share though I'm not sure we can do too much about it? Perhaps at least it means the inhibitors are blocking all oestrogen which is what they're supposed to do, and obviously most effectively - and thereby. helping block any recurrence.

I've managed to cope with the dryness (unless it gets worse) by using liberal - and I mean LIBERAL amounts of KY jelly.... I've heard of others using "YES" - is that better? Also "YES" comes in oil based and water based, and not sure which is preferable? I've also been prescribed Replens but not sure how much I like that as it just seems to ooze out like a discharge. But it's our husbands/partners I feel sorry for, and that also gives us an added problem in how to deal with it. Fortunately for me and my husband, passions are now less urgent and frequent, but it's still an important part of our relationship, especially for him, and it's dealing with that in an honest a way as possible that's not easy.

For what it worth, and if it's not too much information, I think safe simple sex toys from a reputable outlet (such as Beecourse - google it), may just help. I nearly made it one night! Otherwise maybe muddle through and see if we can exchange tips...

love Cherry
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

I'm the same! I'm thinking of mentioning it next time I see oncologist, I also blame my lack of labido on Arimadex tablets, I've been married nearly 30 years, my husband is understanding but its very frustrating. I haven't felt 'normal' for a year now and I can't see things improving either:-(
Jo

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Oh how I know how you feel CherryH, I feel EXACTLY the same. I am only just 50 and have had bc twice now and currently on Anastrozole. I couldn't care two hoots if I never made love again but I just can't bring myself to say this to my husband. I blame it on the tablets and the fact that they've not only taken away my libido but made me very dry too, so when we do try & make love it hurts so much. My husband understands this and bless him he tries everything to try and make things better and I have to try and force myself to go along with all his ideas because I can't bring myself to tell him I just don't want it anymore. It would hurt him so much. I really don't want to be like this and I get angry that it's yet another aspect of my life that bc has robbed me of. I would give anything to feel "normal" again but after 7 years I don't think it's ever going to happen
lbx157

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

me too - tried to explain things to my onc but all he suggested was using lube - i tried to get across this wasn't really the problem but just ended up red faced ; (
cheers
caroline

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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Hi
I'm just the same! Sex is okay (4 months after surgery and a month after ending rads) but haven't had an orgasm since going on Letrozole 2 weeks before surgery - which I suppose is understandable given that it is a 'hormone inhibitor'. But considering Letrozole had reduced the tumour by 20% in two weeks - I reckon it's a small price to pay! I've decided not to expect anything - so it'll be a nice surprise if it happens! All best wishes.
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Re: Anastrozole and Libido

Hello CherryH



Welcome to the forums, you've come to the right place for support as the users of this site have a wealth of experience and knowledge between them.


I have put a link to a BCC publication which may help you.


http://www2.breastcancercare.org.uk/publications/treatment-side-effects/sexuality-intimacy-breast-ca...


If you would like to talk to someone in confidence then please do phone the helpline here where you can talk to a trained member of staff. Calls to the helpline are free, 0808 800 6000 lines open Mon-Fri 9-5 and Sat 10-2


Best wishes


June, moderator

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Anastrozole and Libido

I know compared to some of the challenges on these boards, my comments are trivial and insignificant, but nevertheless I would feel better sharing this and seeing if others have the same issue. Apologies if this post offends anyone as it is rather an intimate problem.
I'm 64 and been happily married for 41 years. The last 8 or so I enjoyed HRT and testosterone implants boosting my hormones into that of a thirty-something young female! However, last September breast cancer put an end to all that with a mastectomy in October followed by radiotherapy and anastrozole. I'm still happy, feel very well, coping comfortably on the pills and optimistically hopeful that the BC is now behind me. And yes, I do have some side effects from anastrozole with the odd twinge in my joints - but mainly with my libido.
Simply gone. Vanished. After a fulfilling and enjoyable sex life for us both, I now really couldn't care a jot if I'm celibate for the rest of my days. But I love my husband deeply and don't wish to put the damper on things 100% so although he understands my interest is more cosy than demanding, we stlll make love, albeit a bit less frequently.
The thing is, between you and me (and sorry if this is too much information), my clitoris is no more sensitive than my little toe. We sometimes use a vibrator as a fun sexual aid - but nope. Not a tickle. In fact it irritates. And I don't even miss, need or want an orgasm. So ometimes I fake it. An unheard of necessity a year ago!
Strangely, it hasn't affected our contented companionship or relationship one iota (though I think if he read all this it might). He would feel very unhappy if he thought I got nothing out of making love - anyway I do, I get intimacy. But I confess the zero sexual feelings are a secret which I need to share. Thanks for reading this. And maybe one day I WILL feel something again? All best wishes and thoughts to all you girls,
Marianne H