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Nov 15, 2015 10:00AM
Maybe this should go on the Complimentary and Holistic board, but since it follows up on what was said before I'm posting it here. I'll post something over there also.
I take a lot of supplements and I'm starting tamoxifen tomorrow. After doing a lot of reading on the subject, I share elaineweil's concern above that many supplements have the potential to interact unfavorably with tam, by either reducing the effectiveness or increasing toxicity of tam. If I'm going to take it and subject my body to the adverse effects, I don't want to be taking anything else that prevents it from working. But I also don't want to give up all supplement use, when many are purported to attack the cancer in a different way from tamoxifen, and could possibly provide some added benefit. Tamoxifen isn't always that effective on its own, depending on heaven knows how many factors unique to any individual's constitution and cancer . It's a real dilemma for someone like me who would prefer to skip the tam all together, but I'm just a little too afraid to trust alternatives alone.
My philosophy regarding supplement use, since there is often not a lot of scientific proof of efficacy in humans, has always been to lean towards those substances that might help and most likely can't hurt, with at least some science behind them. That's all well and good when you're taking supplements only, but when you add in a drug like tamoxifen that is easily affected by other drugs and supplements that are metabolized in similar ways, it's a whole different ballgame. I'm not happy about it but I've already had to eliminate the possibility of more than one supplement due to probable interactions with tam.
elaineweill mentions a study that was underway to test how BreastDefend interacts with Tamoxifen. It has finally been completed and the outcome looks good in mice. The results were presented at the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting in the spring of 2015, but as far as I can tell it hasn't been published in a peer reviewed journal yet. Anyway, here it is: BreastDefend enhances the effect of tamoxifen in estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer in vitro and in animal models in vivo
I'm leaning towards taking it, but still have quite a bit of research and thinking to do.
7/31/2015, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH)
10/7/2015 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right
11/16/2015 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)