I was diagnosed in June, same as you, clear margins, no spread to lymph nodes, and decided not to have radiotherapy or letrazole. I had to go off HRT and have been having quite bad menopause symptoms anyway with hot flushes, insomnia, joint pains and palpitations and if I took letrazole it probably would be worse. The scars have healed really nicely and I check every day for any changes. The consultant said I could have mastectomy but I think it's a bit drastic at the moment. Anyway, I'm fine, just hoping menopause symptoms die down a bit, but my life is the same as before. It's a hard decision though, not knowing whether it's the right one or not. The good thing is that I am being monitored and can phone the breast clinic and come in right away to be checked if I have any worries.
So good luck Chrissy with your decision and take care.
Kind regards, Wendyx
Hi Wendy, It appears that I am in the same situation as you and need to make a decision re- radiotherapy and Letrozole treatment. I had a therapeutic lt mammoplasty and " matchy matchy right mammoplasty 2 weeks ago. at my follow up appt yesterday, I was told clear margins and no lymph / vascular involvement.
My offered treatment plan is 5 sessions of Rad and the 5 years of Letrozole - not sure re - side effects and has all happened really fast ( I am still in a state of shock) Need to look on the positive side an NHS boob job - reduction of "heavy breasts" !!! trying to retain my sense of humour and keep in control.
Best wishes for your recovery and decision making xx
Thank You, Wendy, for your Good Luck and Well wishes.
You've had a number of good reports about Letrozole, just on this thread. There are many more on the Forum, and endless statistics for it on-line.
As I said earlier - things/treatments have moved on so much since my BC time. Good Luck to you too, with those decisions, and hope you Keep and Stay Well too, darlin'.
Lotsa love, Dellywelly xXx
Thanks Delly. I wasn't offered any choice of treatment, they just said I was having lumpectomy, radiation and letrozole. I may well have done the same as you so as not to have radiotherapy but too late now. Anyway, good luck for the future, stay safe and well.
Hi again Wendy
My treatment options for both, were either lumpectomy and rads, or mastectomy and full ANC, which was standard procedure at that time, and no rads. In the end, I chose masts and ANC for both, to "avoid" having to have rads, it possibly damaging the skin for future recon, and basically remove any risk of any further future recurrence in the breast tissue. My 2nd boob was just prior to the SNB procedure being approved and launched. Fortunately, I didn't require chemo.
I sooo remember how difficult it was having to make decisions, Wendy. Just dealing with the cancer diagnosis alone is difficult for anyone as it is, without all the extra decisions on top! And YOU have a great many other health considerations to boot, too. xXx
Thanks for your reply. So sorry to hear what you've put up with over the years but glad you're still ok. Did you have radiotherapy as well as hormone therapy? My heart and body are saying I don't want either but I will talk to the oncologist and ask him loads of questions when I see him. I know the doctors push for these additional treatments but I wonder if it makes that much difference statistically?
Anyway, thanks again Delly and take care.
HECK, flower - What a difficult decision. I can understand your dilemma. Soo much for you to have to "weigh up". with your other health considerations alongside your BC ones.
You have your surgeon/consultant, Radiologist and BCN to "Brainstorm" with. Get ALL their views of/on, yeh?
It's by no means on the same level, but after my 2nd mast and full ANC 2007 (not even a year after my 1st mast and ANC, 2006!!), I was advised to take Tamoxifen. Hadn't been advised to after the 1st, though BOTH were Oestrogen +ve, and I was "still" PRE-Menopause. Things have moved on soo very much with treatments and advice since back then.
But. . . I took Tamoxifen for 3 months, after Boob 2, and suffered such bad side effects, depression and otherwise, I "chose" to discontinue it. I was prepared to suffer the consequences of not doing and feeling "better", than it BADLY AFFECT my "quality of life" by taking it, and it possibly help prevent reoccurence!! That was MY DECISION to make. Another part of that decision was down to my Mum's best friend, having taken Tamoxifen for OVER the then 5yr recommendation, after her mastectomy. BUT she developed secondaries in her brain, spine, long bones and liver >>> became terminal 😞 The Lovely Joycie.
YES, we are advised and guided by the wonderful medical professionals. But at the end of the day - the decision is down to us as to what we feel/know is gonna be the best one for us, with all other considerations for OUR OWN LIFE taken into account.
I'm STILL here, 14 yrs on and doing fine, DESPITE that decision (MY OWN for myself) ALL those years ago.
Keep gathering and weighing up, I say, so that you end up being happy and settled in your own mind, with whatever decision you DO make.
Good Luck to you darlin'. Am sending you lots of love,
Delly x X x
Just to say thanks @AmeliaEdwards for your positive post about letrozole. I've nearly finished chemo and about to start letrozole, it's good to hear positive things about it. I'm also grade 3 with lymphs involved so have to take all treatment offered.
Also good luck @Wendyosul with your decision ❤️ x
Sorry you have the other health issues to contend with, that certainly puts things into perspective regarding any follow up treatments. I wish you well going forward.
Thanks for replying. The doctor said there was no cancer in the sentinel node, it hadn't spread there, and also the margins of the lumpectomy were clear. He said it was standard practice to be given radiotherapy and letrozole as I was positive for estrogen although I was HER2 negative. With radiation I am worried about lung damage (I have asthma already) and heart damage (heart problems already run in my family). With letrozole I'm worried about bone and joint problems (I have already had a shoulder replacement and need knee replacements). So you can see I've already got enough problems without adding to them. I told the doctor this and he said speak to the radiotherapy oncologist about it.
best wishes Jacqu,
When you say you were given the ‘all clear’ could you explain that further please? What were the results of the surgery? Have you spoken to your BCN about your worries regarding your recommended treatment?
I had a lumpectomy in May, clear margins, 0/3 nodes, ER+ 8/8 PR+ 8/8 HER-, currently having radiotherapy after which I will start Letrozole. The radiation is to ‘mop up’ any stray cancer cells (despite clear margins), letrozole to prevent recurrence. I’m not looking forward to 5 years of hormone therapy but it’s for my benefit.
As for radiation given on the left breast, there is a breath hold technique done during the treatment which ‘lifts’ the breast, also radiotherapy measurements are very precise.
I’m sure there will be others replying to your post in more detail.
I’m just letting you know about my experience with letrozole as there are so many scare stories out there. I’ve been on letrozole for 6 years and apart from a few joint, mainly knee aches, I’ve had no problems. I find walking helps the knees so that it has become a negligible complaint. It is an amazing drug and I’m sure it has helped me stay cancer free for so long. I was grade 3 with lymph node involvement so I had the works - mastectomy, chemo, radio etc. Good luck with your decision.
I've just had lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy three weeks ago and was given the all clear, no spread to nodes, but the doctor says I still have to have radiotherapy and letrozole. I've heard that radiation to the left breast is damaging to the heart and also letrozole has many horrible side effects and since there was no spread I'm considering declining the further treatment. Had anyone else done this and, if so, how are they doing?
I really don't know what to do so any advice would be really helpful.
Best wishes to everyone.