• I stopped taking Tamoxifen for several months because I was having trouble with the side effects. Onco wants to put me on Arimidex.

    Asked by KarynBe on Thursday, December 6, 2012

    I stopped taking Tamoxifen for several months because I was having trouble with the side effects. Onco wants to put me on Arimidex.

    What kind of side effects can I expect after being off Tamoxifen for so long, then starting this new meds?

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • Nomadicme's Avatar
      Nomadicme

      How long were you on Tamoxifen? I'm on it now and hate it, been on it for over a year. And get this I was fired from my last job as I was late at times due to the side effects. I filed a complaint with human rights, and my former employer's attorney had the nerve to write about my "supposed disability". Can you imagine? I do wish for all of those involved to get a supposed disability, just saying.
      Anyway, back to Arimidex. AIs have been conclusively shown to be the treatment of choice in post menopausal women, leading to a far better survival outcome. So if you are able to take an AI over Tamoxifen, do so. I've read that osteoporosis is a common side effect, but speaking to your onc and/or family practitioner to monitor your bone density and/or put you on a drug to prevent osteoporosis is a practical choice. Osteoporosis is to be taken seriously, my grandmother died of sequelae from osteoporosis (broken hips, bed bound, pneumonia). Not to mention that your quality of life will suffer greatly. I've read the side effects are like menopause, so similar to Tamoxifen I suppose. However, the fact that tamoxifen gave you issues does not mean that Aromidex will. Plus there are two other AIs, so if Aromidex gives you too many side effects, then you cam switch to one of the others. i did read that patients that experienced joint pain while on Arimidex had higher survival rates (sometimes you gotta love the pain). But such is the case with us cancer survivors, we'll do anything to experience another sunset.

      almost 5 years ago
    • KarynBe's Avatar
      KarynBe

      I missed a lot of work because of the pain and hot flashes that kept me up at night. Some mornings I couldn't move, getting out of bed was a challenge. I was written up too. When I explained to my administrator I had breast cancer he just said, "Yeah but that was 2 years ago wasn't it?" That killed me. I couldn't believe how insensitive his remark was.

      almost 5 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar
      Nomadicme

      Darn, I can't believe how horrible people can be. I now know I should have formally requested reasonable accommodation due to my disability, and I hope women reading this forum find this and use the information to defend themselves. Part of my reluctance to file a request had to do with my wanting to appear as normal as possible -heck no one could see the scars in my body and I had hair! Plus after speaking with my boss about my issue, I thought that was enough (I have he big C, I have issues, a woman would understand...right?). Anyway, as I said, hope someone else benefits from this (and my story with my former employer is not over, hope the courts penalize them for discrimination)

      almost 5 years ago
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      I only lasted 2 months on Tamoxifen before the side effects just wore me out and I stopped taking it. I meet with my onc next week and I will see what other options I have but I really plan to do nothing else and just hope for the best. I had a bilat and 6 sessions of chemo and was Stage 1.

      almost 5 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar
      nancyjac

      The side effects you may experience with arimidex will be the same whether or not you previously took Tamoxifen or not. The most common side effect of arimidex is joint stiffness.

      almost 5 years ago
    • KarynBe's Avatar
      KarynBe

      @Nancebeth I too was stage 1, 6 rounds of chemo+radiation. I was also on Zoladex. Couldn't stand the side effects, I've been off of both for a year. At my last appointment my onco suggested we try Arimidex. I'm really thinking why bother....

      almost 5 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar
      karen1956

      Just because you had side effects with Tamox, doesn't mean that you'll have side effects with the AI's...some women have none at all....
      REading the posts below....I was fired from my job after I finished Tx because I couldn't do it as well as below...I had no recourse....I think when we are in Tx they can't do anything, but I don't think taking tamox or an AI would qualify under the ADA.....it was hard on me emotionally and financially, but in the long run it has turned out for the best.....aside from the financial costs, I am better off in the job situation...I work for a different school district and now I only work 3 days/week instead of full-time.....Once of the reasons I quit the AI's is because the side effects were affecting my quality of life...BUT, I have friends who took them for 5 years or more if tamox and AI's and NO side effects what so ever!!!!

      almost 5 years ago

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