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Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

29 REPLIES 29
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

I've been on anostrozole for 6 weeks and it just seems to keep giving! Arthritis feeling in both hands on the little and ring finger. Hot flushes of the extreme. Nausea. Loss of appetite recently. Fatigue. Sleepiness. Now going out in become light headed and dizzy feeling I'm going to faint. Now I get to worry and my heart races I start coughing and get in a vicious circle. I've been in tears last few days. All I want to do is sleep. From being fit as a flea last year to someone feeling so old and crap I am just becoming an unwholly mess at 50
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

hi 

  I had to come off tamoxifen as the SE were becoming unmanageable ; I had a break for 8 weeks then they did a blood test which confirmed chemo had put me into menopause so could start Anastrozole.  started two weeks ago - week one fine, I was feeling pretty positive as my SE on tamoxifen started the next day.  I have had bad nausea and numb fingers but nothing too bad.  Then a few days ago crushing pain in chest - long story involving ecgs but GP convinced not the drug but chest bone inflamed which "can happen to anyone"  - problem is I am not believing them.  I just feel its too much of a coincidence - Ive had the bone scan come through (having to change date as am away) but am seriously thinking maybe enough is enough.  I know its important (7/8 hormone positive) but Ive done chemo and surgery and am just not up to much more of my body breaking.  Ive been gettign really bad headaches this week so combined with the heart area pain and fatigue Im getting a bit washed out.  I was feeling pretty good after coming off the tamoxifen. I also find the psychological aspect difficulty - I was taking the tablets with the mantra "begone cancer" but its kind of a daily reminder and I am out of strength.  

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

My surgeon said start on anastrozole now, stop when radiotherapy begins then back on again when it finishes. It seems to be different for everyone!
x
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Jan, I'm starting rads next week and ocologist has said I'm not to start Anastrozole until after I finish. I have MS so she doesn't want me hit by two lots of side effects IF I have any.

So it's obviously OK to wait and start after rads. 

After what you've been through it's understandable that you want to wait and give yourself a bit of healing time. If you feel you would rather wait I think you should go with that feeling...unless they can give you a really good reason not to wait. 

Thinking of you, 

Hugs, 

Pat xx 

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Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Kim saw doctor today got calcium tablets twice a day and Biophosphates once a week my doctor was great and said any problems see her again as there are alternatives you can try so felt better about it will start tomorrow and see how I get on hope all well with you Jackie

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Jan been on the tablets seven weeks now started them during rads have a few hot flushes but otherwise ok had density scan have just got the tablets today calcium tabs twice a day andbiophosphate once a week like you concerned about taking them and side effects but will see how I get on have osteopenia so feel have no choice good luck there are a lot of us taking these tablets for such a long time but feeling positive have to don't we take care

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Morning

I have been following your comments. I should have started to take Anastrozole last week when I started rads . I discussed it with my oncologist but I wanted a bone density scan first to give me a benchmark. He told me to talk to my gp about it and to take the pills. I decided to wait. I now have a bone scan next week. My dilemma now is do I wait to the end of rads or do I start taking the pills after the bone scan? Does it matter? Still really struggling with the concept of side effects for so long. I think emotionally I accepted chemo and rads side effects because I can deal with them an move on but 5 - 10 years of SEs I am really struggling. I know I may not get many, any or all but at the moment reluctant to even start hormone therapy. Logically I know I am being stupid especially as my ER was 8 so obviously very hormone receptive but I am mentally , emotionally and physically exhausted and right now just want to get off this rollercoaster.
Sorry for the moan ladies just needing to get my thoughts down I think.
Hope you all have some sunshine today.
Hugs Jan
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Thank you for your replies, and yes I'm sure you are both right, I will be positive and carry on as usual. It will be good to escape for a bit before the app with oncologist and radiotherapy! xx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hiya 

Im sure I was told that they take 6-10 weeks to start kicking in so no worrying !! Think positive and try to forget that you are taking them and you will be fine ...Mind over matter !!!

 

Hugs xx 

Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

I've been taking mine 3 weeks and I haven't had any noticeable side effects. My legs and feet do ache from time to time during the day, but that could be due to my I creased exercise and side effects left over from chemotherapy and radiotherapy which I've just finished. Not stopping me from doing anything and I've only felt the need to take paracetamol once at bedtime.
Hopefully you'll be fine - enjoy your holiday 😊
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi,
Can anyone tell me how long it takes for side effects to kick in? Going on holiday next week and wonder if anything will have begun by then! Thanks xx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Thanks Carolyn, will expect none and deal with what comes! Glad you have managed ok. xx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hiya Heather
Welcome . Not everyone gets side effects from hormone therapy and so it's just trying it and seeing how u get on with it. There are choices so if this one doesn't suit ..you might be able to switch to another.
I took tamox/ arimidex for five years and coped ok with them. I'm now on letrozole and managing ok with the side effects.
There are very important parts of the treatment and I wish you well with it.
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi everyone, 

My first post on this forum.  I have just had my results following WLE and SNB, margins and nodes clear thank goodness.  I have just started on Anastrozole whilst waiting for radiotherapy, and was very interested to read of all your experiences with side effects.  I have arthritis in my upper spine and neck which causes aches, pains and stiffness in my shoulders, neck and hands, also headaches, dizzieness and fuzzy head at times.  So I wonder how much difference the Anastrozole will make in that way, just have to wait and see I guess.  I will have a bone scan soon.

Good luck to all and hang in there!

 

Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Domkat, as you will have read, it was the side effects of the bisphosphonates that really worried me, but my GP was really good and I've since spoken to someone else whose mum has taken them for a few years with no problems, so that helped too 😊
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi New to forum also on Anastrozole some nausea and hot flushes also got osteopenia have got to see GP. about treatment bit worried about side affects from these drugs more decisions to make but glad to see I am not alone

Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Seren, good to hear from you! My next prescription for Anastrozole is by Teva, so hopefully I'll be fine on them too 😊
My GP was quite positive about the bisphosphonates and has prescribed me Alendronic Acid, once a week tablets. Picked my day as Sunday as I reckoned that I'd have more time to make the routine of sitting upright for 30 minutes and delaying my first cup of tea of the day!! Will start taking it on Sunday as last Sunday we had a family meal and I didn't want any side effects spoiling the day!!
Still I obvious side effects from Anastrozole.... !!
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Ladies - haven't been round for a while - actually had a holiday! 

 

Ive been on Anastrozole since diagnosis in December, so have had 6 months with it now.  I'm on the TEVA brand and have stuck with that throughout.  I switched a couple of months ago to taking it in the evening, around 8 00pm ish.

Initially when taking it, I got some aches and pains, mainly in my wrists and fingers but these have subsided now.  I do, however, get frequent hot flushes, the severe kind, where you feel as if you've just walked in to a furnace!  I haven't done anything about this though, as I'm feeling I can't possibly take any more medication.  I may change my mind as we go through the Summer though.

 

i had a DEXA scan about four months ago and they found I have bone density issues.  Smiley Sad  I now take Adcal-D3 chewable twice a day, which is like Edinburgh Rock - if you've ever had that.

i also got prescribed a bisphosphonate once per week - they're a bit fiddly to take!

However, my Oncolgist wants to put me on the bisphosphonate 6 monthly infusion to help protect against future bone secondaries, obvs this will help with the bone density problems too, so the tablets will stop.

i have multiple dental implants (had them around 4 years ago now) but dental surgeon said, as they have settled now, he wouldn't envisage any problems.  The 6 monthly infusion is meant to be kinder than the weekly tablet.

 

Also about two months ago I had a full body nuclear bone scan, as a precaution - thankfully all was well.  I was told they like to do this before the Zometa infusions begin.  

 

xxx

Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Thanks for that BottyBoo, really helps put my mind at rest Smiley Happy The more I think about it, the more I'm realising that if that's what I need then it's for the best!
No side effects from the Anastrozole yet and I am taking it at night so as you say, maybe I'm sleeping through them!
Xxx
Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Kim. I took an anastrozole for a month whilst waiting for wound to heal enough for chemo. At least I felt I was doing something.
I found the only side effect I had was nausea. Was told to take either first or last thing. I swapped from first thing to last thing and the nausea either disappeared or didn't bother me because I was asleep.
I have arthritis in my knees so was dreading aches and pains but didn't get any.
With my first chemo I had the bisphosphonate Zoledronic acid as it's been shown to help in preventing secondaries to the bone. Yes there is the risk of osteonecrosis but my dentist is aware so will keep extra special eye out. Have to say the infusion helped my arthritis too. Didn't take any pain killers for a week after. Xx
Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Pretty sure it's the bisphosphonate that they want me to take and it does worry me, but I guess I have to weigh up the pros and cons and get in with it like we all seem to have done since diagnosis! I hope this is the last decision I have to take for a long while! I do ha e a very good GP though and I see him on Friday.
Not sure when Anastrozole side effects kick in, but 4 days in - so far so good!
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Jan and Kim,
I've been taking Anastrozole and Calceos for 27 months as I was diagnosed with Osteopenia when I had my DEXA scan prior to starting Anastrozole.
The other drug used for ladies with low bone density or to prevent further bone density loss is a bisphosphonate.
If you have Osteoporosis your GP may prescribe a bisphosphonate and it is this drug that is known to affect the jaw and teeth. That is why you must tell your dentist if you are taking a bisphosphonate. You need to have regular dental check-ups because there is a very small chance that you will get osteonecrosis of the jaw.
I am due another DEXA scan this year and just hope my bone density has not deteriorated any further because I would be very reluctant to take a bisphosphonate.
Good luck girls with your hormone treatment.
Onwards and upwards!
M x

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Kim
I am taking calicoes twice a day. It is calcium and vitamin d. I have vitamin d deficiency . I don't know if this is different to what your gp is proposing. I have been taking it since November. I was aware of a possible effect on my teeth but only because it contains sugar. I always take it before I clean my teeth morning and night. I will do some research now you have raised the question.
Thanks for the tip about when to take hormones. I had heard it's better at night so worst of the stiffness is worn off during the day.
Jan x
Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Jan, can I ask what you are taking for your bones? It was recommended that I take something back in November but because of starting treatment for BC my GP suggested I wait until I was out the other end first. The side effects of that medication worried me especially how it can effect your jaw / teeth. But it looks like I have no choice now!! Seeing my GP on Friday so I'll let you know what he says.
I've been advised to take Anastrozole at night, so take it about 10 - 10:30. Not sure why - maybe because it makes you tired? I have slept well....!
Xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi
I am due to start taking this drug when I start radiotherapy on 15th June. I already take medication for my bones so am very concerned about that particular side effect. Before all this kicked in I was very physically active and reasonably fit. Much less so now after surgery and chemo plus I have put on 10kilos!
I am sort of prepared for joint problems but wondered if anyone has any advice, apart from exercise, that works for them.
Do you take any supplements?
Does it make a difference when you take your tablet? Morning or evening?
Thanks
Jan x
Community Champion

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Thank you everyone, really helpful! The brand I have at the moment is Accord. I had already decided exercise is the way forward for various reasons, but having watched the Manchester Great Run on TV last weekend and seeing people with various chronic illnesses say that exercise really helps, I was inspired further. I dragged myself out for walks after my last cycle of chemotherapy and am continuing to do so through radiotherapy. I'm only 2 tablets into this so I guess it will be a week or so before any side effects kick in!
Good luck everyone xxx
Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi there, I have been on Anastrozole for almost a year now and have found the side effects vary a lot from brand to brand. Having tried four different ones I now have repeat perscriptions for the one that suits me best. Hope this helps  Sue x

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Kim

I  have been taking anastrozole  for 9 months and I  think it helps if you stay as active as possible. I walk cycle and swim as often as I  can manage and find this  keeps joint stiffness to a minimum and really counteracts the fatigue. If you sit and wait for the side effects maybe you are more likely to notice them.

 

Good luck and stay positive xx

Member

Re: Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Hi Kim I started taking Anastrozole 1 March this year after mx chemo and rads.i was given the Accord brand.

i find in the morning my thumb joint down to my wrists ache and it's difficult to grip things. I have had one or two dizzy or light headed spells they do not last long but worry me when out shopping I just have to go and sit down until I Recover. I also suffered slight loss of blood for the first 6/7 weeks not everyday but it does warn you on the literature. Apart from continual tiredness I am coping. The packet I started the other day is manufactured by Synthon BV so I will report back if anything gets worse or better not seen anyone mention this brand it's made in the Netherlands. Good luck with it we just have to keep going to stop this dreadful disease returning.

Community Champion

Anastrozole - anyone else just or recently started taking Anastrozole?

Just started taking Anastrozole and wondered how everyone is coping with it or would like to share experiences as they happen? I had a DEXA (?) bone scan in November because of a different medical issue which showed some thinning so I need to see my GP to arrange additional medication to help stop further bone density loss. I'm concerned about the side effects of that medication more than Anastrozole, but I don't think I have much choice!!
I'm really hoping I can keep on top of any aches and pains and really hope hair loss doesn't happen! My hair is just growing back!!
Looking forward to hearing from you all!