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Starting Zoladex advice

Too-Ticky
Too-Ticky Member Posts: 19

I've been on Tamoxifen for nearly a month, now. Had a telephone appointment with one of the Oncology team today and they're going to start me on Zoladex as well next Monday. Does anyone have any advice or can tell me what to expect from a patient's perspective, please?

Comments

  • elainetherese
    elainetherese Member Posts: 1,625
    edited January 2022

    I've been on Zoladex for almost seven years. I have no side effects from it. However, Zoladex is a pill that is inserted in your subcutaneous fat with a giant needle, the biggest needle I have ever seen. Fortunately, I don't mind but the nurses keep apologizing for the size of the needle. Bottom line: Zoladex is not for needlephobes.

  • blue22
    blue22 Member Posts: 172
    edited January 2022

    For me, I just looked away and it was an easy routine For my first injection I was given lidocaine and ice. The second time, the nurse recommended trying just ice. That worked great! I iced until I was numb. I lost track of how long I had those injections, but I am done now.

  • parakeetsrule
    parakeetsrule Member Posts: 605
    edited January 2022

    Whatever you do, don't look at the needle! Even if the nurse says, "Wow, this needle is huge!" Gee, thanks lady.

    I've had two shots so far and I don't think I've had any side effects yet, except maybe some hot flashes. But that's expected. I haven't needed any preparation, it hurts a little but it's not bad and over quickly.

    Does everyone get it in their stomach?

  • Too-Ticky
    Too-Ticky Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2022

    Thanks for your replies. Fortunately, I don't have a fear of needles... But I'm not big on pain. ;) I've been doing my own B12 injections into my tummy for a few years. But they're with a skinny insulin syringe rather than the whacking great harpoon I gather is used for the Zoladex implant! I've been told I'll be having it in my stomach too.

  • parakeetsrule
    parakeetsrule Member Posts: 605
    edited January 2022

    Did you start today? How did it go?

  • gamzu710
    gamzu710 Member Posts: 203
    edited January 2022

    I started Zoladex during chemo to protect my ovaries and am continuing and will be adding tamoxifen after I'm done with radiation. The only side effect I've noticed is some hot flashes. Like everyone else said, the needle is huge and you should not look! I won't lie, it's kinda painful, but it's over in a blink. The nurse offers me lidocaine spray each time but doesn't think it really helps, and the patient next to me got hers with the spray while I got mine without and she sure seemed to feel it anyway, so I don't bother with it. It's over really fast.

  • gb2115
    gb2115 Member Posts: 553
    edited January 2022

    I'm supposed to be getting my first one in a couple of weeks if it doesn't get delayed again. My MO offers no sort of pain control, says I won't need it. Sigh.

  • Too-Ticky
    Too-Ticky Member Posts: 19
    edited January 2022

    I had my first one yesterday. I won't pretend it was painless (no pain relief offered for it at my hospital) but it was over very quickly and didn't bleed much, they just stuck a wee plaster over the spot.

    Now I just wait for the delightful menapausey symptoms to start, I suppose ;)

    Don't worry @gb2115, it's a very quick snip-snap ouch moment, and no lingering pain. Less painful than a vaccine, I thought.

  • parakeetsrule
    parakeetsrule Member Posts: 605
    edited January 2022

    It's not painless but not much worse than any other shot. The worst part is pulling your butt out into the fresh air and awkwardly bending over. :) Last time I grabbed my phone and watched cute videos while they did the injections. It helped distract my brain a little!

  • gamzu710
    gamzu710 Member Posts: 203
    edited January 2022

    Mine are put in my stomach, so no mooning required. I guess it varies by office.

  • parakeetsrule
    parakeetsrule Member Posts: 605
    edited January 2022

    Whoops! I was confusing it with Faslodex. I get Zolodex in my stomach too.

    Forgot which thread I was reading. :)

  • gb2115
    gb2115 Member Posts: 553
    edited January 2022

    I wonder if it's like getting your port stuck, in that it hurts but only for a short while. They stopped using cold spray at chemo and I was really nervous about it until I realized the pain was short lived.

  • mle42
    mle42 Member Posts: 124
    edited January 2022

    gb2115, ask for an ice pack to numb up beforehand, or bring one yourself if you aren't sure your doctor's office will accommodate. I got my first shot a few days ago, before she stabbed me the nurse had me hold a bag of ice directly on my stomach for about 10 minutes until I thought I was about to get frostbite, and even though that needle is ginormous I barely felt anything. And I *hate* needle sticks, even the butterfly needles for blood draws. It has been tender and bruised since then but not too bad. The results of my estradiol test came in the following day, it turns out my ovaries are still comatose from chemo and I probably didn't even need the zoladex! (FSH 122, Estradiol 3 pg/mL) Oh well, better safe than sorry.

  • random_wmercado8507
    random_wmercado8507 Member Posts: 11

    I just received my first injection yesterday and the nurse just placed an ice pack for a minute to numb the area. She pinched the area during the injection, I felt the pinch more than the injection. Painful but not terrible. My abdomen hurts today if I touch it or my pants rub on it. In fact, even sleeping last night hurt laying on that side. Still talking tamoxifen.

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,894

    @random_wmercado8507 - Thanks for bringing this thread back to the active topics! Sharing your experience is incredibly valuable to others going through similar experiences. Thank you for supporting the community! And we wish you a speedy recovery from your stomach discomfort.

    Sincerely,

    The Mods