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Jan 11, 2011 10:08AM
I was diagnosed with IDC left breast March 07 at the age of 52. I first had a lumpectomy, second surgery was axillary clearance with a total of 30 nodes taken out. The sentinal node was positive so my medical team suggested that an oophorectomy would be a good option for me instead of chemo, so that was my 3rd surgery, all within 3 weeks, so I was totally over it all after I had the ooophorectomy. I was 80% ER+ and 80% PR positive, but had not started menopause.
Obviously after the oophorectomy I went into total menopause overnight, and it was a pretty hard time. For the first few weeks my body went into total withdrawal, and I experienced the shakes pretty bad, however night time was the worst. I experienced hot sweats 24 hours per day, and even though I am 3.5 years down the track now, the hot flushes still persist all the time, however I must say they are not near as bad as they were during the first 12 months after surgery. I still have a fan at my desk at work (and also in my bedroom for night) and I do use it a lot when I have the hot sweats, which I have even during the winter time. I also find it much harder to sleep at night. Most nights I would not get any more than about 4 hours of sleep, and the hot sweats probably don't help there either.
I am currently still on an AI, Femara, so it may also be responsible for the ongoing hot sweats also. My hair has thinned dramatically, and commenced to fall out within about 2 weeks of the oophorectomy, however again, I believe Femara may also have to take some responsibility for this. Even though it has not been easy, I would do it all again, if I knew it was going to help from having a recurrence. From the threads here, it would appear that a lot of ladies are having the chemical shutdown of the ovaries with injections, instead of the surgery, however I decided on the surgery as I would have been fairly close to menopause anyway. Yes, and as faithfulheart noted above, I also do get very weepy, it doesn't take much to get me going.
Good luck with your decision.
5/11/2007, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 1/30 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
5/30/2007 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Prophylactic ovary removal
9/28/2007 Femara (letrozole)