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Topic: Coping with Arimidex

Forum: Help Me Get Through Treatment — Medications and other treatments, medical benefits, and managing side effects.

Posted on: Jun 6, 2010 12:35PM

COTK wrote:

I feel like I need to share with you ladies my "tricks" to coping with arimidex. I have been going through so much for 2.5 years that I said to heck with the side affects and I said no more. Then my doctor said that due to cin3 abnormal cells in my uterus I have to have a hysterectomy. Then I was told I didn't have to take my cancer medicine because they will be removing my ovaries and there goes the food for breast cancer cells. After I coped with my anger over the side effects for 2.5 years, I then became angry because if I had known what they (my oncologists) are telling me now.....oh well.

In any case. I previously posted - no more arimidex - but I could feel & see the anger spewing out from my post, so I deleted it. That's not who I am, but that's what this whole thing has affected me. I don't know how my case will work out, but it will not work out with a drug. As you ladies well know without insurance we're talking about A LOT of money and my coverage was arimidex, only. (others were not an option, I was in menopause so Tama...was not an option either)

Even though I have chosen the route to give up on this medicine, there are the strong and committed beyond my capability type people who are continuing on this medicine. So I write this to you.

I am NOT a doctor, what ever I say, I am telling you to SEE AND CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE you try any of these coping remedies that I have found to be helpful with the side effects of this drug. Again - do not try this without checking with your doctors FIRST !!! Some of you ladies already know these things - it is for those who are suffering and do not know. I want to help if I can.

The joints were never bad but yes.....I did walk like an old woman - but there was no pain - I took the recommended dose of a supplement in the health food stores MSM. I do not know if it was this or not but the pain went away. (but I still walked like an old woman)

Vitamin C crystals I would take every day (dissolved in water) But when you start getting the flu like symptoms, if you take it every one or two hours about 4 times in a day - it stops the flu like symptoms.

The excruciating neck pain - could never really find anything to REALLY take that away except for the doctor prescribed 600 - 800 milligram of Ibrubopen (sp?) At least I had a good nights sleep that night. Be careful my doctor tells me that this medicine can make your stomach bleed so eat a lot of food with it. (and I only took it twice a month because the worse flare-ups came when I was suppose to have a period, even though I didn't)

I left the worse for last that affected me. The ears and throat. I saw an ear specialist. He prescribed to me Nasonex. (You know the commercial with the little bumble bee)

I had tininitis (which I still do but that is not pain - just annoying), but have you ever seen the cartoons of bulls that are blowing steam out of their ears? That is what was happening to me. As I am crying on the way to the emergency room - no one could do anything. But Nasonex did !! Not only did it stop the steam, but it also took care of the minor annoying sore throat. I squirt 2 squirts in my nose at night and life became good again.

Just to mention there are supplements for ear health that helps, but to me they never were strong enough, but helped. I was told to be careful by my ear doctor as Nasonex after long time use might cause glaucoma in the eyes. I began to use Nasonex just when I needed it - about twice a month. But could not live without it.

I know everybody takes a shower, but using too hot water would bring on ear problems and the flu like symptoms.

I do not have to take anti-depressants because I have found taking Omega 3 fish oil and Flax seed oil EVERY morning after about 2 weeks into the system, it BLEW ME AWAY JUST HOW HAPPY AND NORMAL I WAS MENTALLY. I use Barleans. I don't know if I am allowed to mention brand names - it worked for me.

Last but now least - I have truly turned all my cares upon Jesus Christ. I am not trying to convert anyone - just telling you WHO took away my fears. But I became tired of the struggle - I believe that I am healed and decided to put the arimidex down. It was a major decision. THEN - came the news of the hystorectomy - all I could say was THANK YOU LORD - THANK YOU LORD !!!.

That's it. AGAIN - do not do or take anything without talking to your doctor FIRST. And this post is just a post to share what worked for me. I truly ADMIRE and my hats off to the ladies who are deciding to continue on any drug that will help you with cancer. It takes a STRONG woman to fight the fight and I pray that each and every one of you will live a long and happy cancer free life. Your doctors truly want you happy and healthy - this is just all they can offer in the 21st century. One day.....

My one and only post, I hope I have helped someone:


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Jun 23, 2010 10:08AM rubyjune40 wrote:

Thank you for your post COTK. I to have been struggling with the side effects of arimidex. I have been on it for 8 months and was ready to call it quits. I have been walking worse then my 98 year old grandma ruby if I can get up,the neck pain is the worst , trying to hold my head up all day at work is becoming impossible. the pain in my bones is frightening. I went to my family doctor friday before last and he said he could improve my quality of life without having to quit the armidex. he gave me a sample of Lyrica, which is for nerve pain . I am now starting to walk with the bounce in my step again. The neck pain is still bad but I can relax more now that I am not hurting all oveer. I'm not 100% better but I am feeling more like 70 years old than 100, which at 51 I really never thought my life would be like this.But your right God is the answer and my faith in him gives me the strength to carry on this journey. God bless you. You have helped me know I am not alone. Two times SURVIVOR Rubyjune40.

DX 8/29/09 new primary IDC .3cm stage 1 grade 2 ER/PR+ unilateral mx recon,arimdex Dx 8/15/2006, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/7 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Dx 8/28/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 23, 2010 11:50AM Hood1980 wrote:

Thank you ladies for posting!    I too have chronic joint pain, especially my neck, hands, and feet.  I'm 52 and am on tamoxifen but will be switiching over to an AI soon and I am not looking forward to it!  If the pain gets any worse, I will have to stop taking it.  The quailtiy of life has got to improve or these medicines are not worth taking.  Thank you for what has worked for you.  I go see my doctor Friday & will be sure to ask her!  Thanks again, Joyce

Dx 4/15/2008, ILC, Right, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 23, 2010 01:42PM MaureenSue wrote:

Thanks for posting. I am on aromasin and have been for a couple of years. I tried arimidex and the joint pain was so severe that I had to switch after just a couple of months. At first I felt the aromasin was okay but slowly over time it also is getting severe. I am 52 and feel like I am 90 also. I have also been under a lot of stress ( my husband just had a liver transplant) and I don't know if that ties in to the pain and wieght gain. I have gained about forty pounds since I have been on all these meds. I just want to feel normal again!!! I feel I am too young to feel so old. I am going to a hand doctor today to see about having carpal tunnel surgery but then I wonder if the carpal tunnel symtoms are made worse by the drugs. thanks, Maureen

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Jun 23, 2010 05:38PM TriciaK wrote:

I'd like to say that I have been taking arimidex for four years now, I'll be five years out from my cancer dx next month.  I had all the side effects listed here and more, but they lessoned in time, I also took glucosamine/chondrotin which is recommended by my onc although it takes about four weeks to kick in.

I had a poor prognosis but thankfully herceptin changed that for me, I don't know if the arimidex is keeping me cancer free but happy to remain on it just on case!!

 I can battle  this drug far more easily than cancer mets anyday:)

Tricia x

Tricia Dx 7/4/2005, IDC: Cribriform, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 3/9 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH)

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