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Any advice on Letrozole

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I am 60 yo (Post menopause) and i had mastectomy on right breast with one SNB removed two weeks ago. Path: DCIS, stage 0, lymph node clear, Grade 2, no evidence of any invasion. Saw oncologist yestersday. He wanted to take letrozole 2.5 mg for 5 years for my L breast. I asked if i can take less and he said that less will not work. He said that i am in low risk group. I am wondering if i can ask for baby tam (5 mg). He is ok for me to start after 3 weeks as i need more time to heal first. I guess I have to try and see how it goes. is it a routine protocol to give hormonal therapy even for stage 0 DCIS, ER+? any advice would be appreciated.

Comments

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,952
    edited May 25
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    Yes, it is very typical! I think the ultimate question one needs to ask when considering not taking recommended treat is, will you have any regrets or feel remorse if you recur? You can look at recurrence rates but those are historical and not predictive of how an individual might fare. You should bear in mind that bc cells can travel through the bloodstream, so lymph nodes are not the only pathway for metastasis. There would no evidence that this was happening until the metastasis had already occurred.
    Whatever you choose is up to you as it all boils down to a matter of risk vs reward. And as an aside, with respect to AI’s, some do have unbearable side effects, some have no side effects or side effects that diminish over time, with no way to predict in advance where you will fall. Take care.

  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,178
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    i’m one that ex Bronx girl is talking about. I took letrozole off and on for about five years with ibrance and unfortunately had my third occurrence but not everybody does and a lot of people don’t have side effects. Mine were minimal and as she said, can you live with yourself if it comes back and you didn’t take it only you can answer that question

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,952
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    I should throw in that I was on one AI or the other for 12 years! My situation is completely different from the op’s but the side effects were manageable most of the time until about year 9 or so. No complaints as I have had 12+ progression free years though no one can say exactly why, i.e. it might not be the AI.

  • noidea123
    noidea123 Member Posts: 5
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    Thanks for the input. i plan to try after 3 weeks. My MO chose AI due to my post menopause status. He said that mine is pre cancerous. However, still need to be treated with hormonal therapy for 5 years. i need to have mammogram every 6 months for 2 years and then every year for my left breast. Blood draws every 6 months for liver function test and CBC when i am on Letrozole. He seems to be willing to work with me. Thanks again for the reply.

  • malleemiss251
    malleemiss251 Member Posts: 370
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    @noidea123 - if you can, keep up a little bit of exercise. It doesn't need to be a lot and can be as simple as a walk. I think it has helped me greatly with some of the side effects of letrozole and there are more studies suggesting that it helps with AI side effects. Of course, everybody is different and I must admit that in the beginning I was just doing it for the feel-good endorphins. My onc has been surprised at the lack of side effects I have had.