Topic: Arimidex - Coping with the SE's

Forum: Hormonal Therapy - Before, During, and After — This is a safe place to share your experiences of others considering or on hormonal treatment.

Posted on: Jul 28, 2010 01:22PM - edited Nov 15, 2017 02:01PM by moderators

Posted on: Jul 28, 2010 01:22PM - edited Nov 15, 2017 02:01PM by moderators

Lowrider54 wrote:

Not just for Arimidex but all the Hormonals - se's are so similar so coping with them should also be similar and the remedies offered should work for any of the Hormonals - don't go away, read on if you are taking any of the hormonal treatments....

For those of us who are taking this potentially life saving/life prolonging drug, it does not come without side effects. There are some very lucky folks who don't have any...GREAT! But for those that do, lets share how we cope with the hot flashes and night sweats and stuff.

The 'Arimidex' thread covers more than just side effects and coping - there is much debate over it going generic and the effectiveness of its use. I am putting this up in hopes that new users can find the answers concerning the se's easily. Of course, please visit the Arimidex thread for more information concerning the statistics, research and controversy surrounding many of the AL's and new treatments we are being offered today.

Treatment is always a personal choice - if Arimidex is your choice, these kind folks can help you manage some of the issues that some with taking it.

I elected to take a low dose of Effexsor to aide with the hot flashes and night sweats. It worked very nicely for me. Water intake and walking assists with the possible joint pain. I eliminated as much gluten from my diet as I could (that stuff is in everything....lol) and did not experience weight gain - I did experience 'weight re-distribution' however - it seems to go to the tummy. I haven't found a good solution for that yet. Cool

Good Luck All!

Hugs

LowRider

Edited by Mods to add content from the main Breastcancer.org site on Arimidex: Benefits, Side Effects and More

Smile...it will make people wonder what you are up to...Initial dx 04/99 - CMF; 9/2009 bone mets Arimidex; 6/2010 Faslodex/Xgeva; 8/2011; abdominal wall invaded, ER/PR flipped to TN, Abraxane/Avastin//Xgeva 09/02/2011; 11/2011Xeloda/Avastin/Xgeva. Dx 9/16/2009, Stage IV, 5/25 nodes, mets, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 01:50PM prayrv wrote:

Thank you for starting this thread.  Lowrider, you rock!

JO - you are a wealth of information, you rock as well

HUGS TO ALL!

T.

Dx 4/27/2007, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 01:59PM Member_of_the_Club wrote:

My issue is hot flashes and night sweats as well.  Effexor is not an answer for me.  I've been on effexor, before I switched to Arimidex, and i had the rare side effect of night sweats.  So I know it won't help me.  Any other ideas?

Dx 9/30/2004, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/17 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 01:59PM - edited Jul 28, 2010 02:00PM by kira1234

LowRider,

Thanks for starting this thread.  I haven't started Arimidex yet, but I have been told has soon as radiation therapy is over I will start. I am on the 5 day treatment, so Friday is my last day.I for one just am wanting to learn about the side effects, and some good ways to deal with them.   What is Effexor? I know you said you used it for the hot flashes, I already went through them 5 years ago, and they were bad, so not looking forward to them again. My poor family went through quite a time last time with the mood swings. Any info anyone can give me will be greatly appreciated.

Karen

Dx 6/2010, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 7/8/2010 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 8/3/2010 Hormonal Therapy 10/5/2010 Aromasin (exemestane) Dx 2/2017, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery Lymph node removal; Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right) Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Jul 28, 2010 02:17PM - edited Jul 28, 2010 02:17PM by Janeluvsdogs

Hi Kira,

Since you are still considering Arimidex, be sure to investigate that there is no Overall Survival value demonstrated with this drug used as an adjuvant therapy. For sure, there is benefit if you are stage IV but not for newly diagnosed.

There is some small benefit for recurrence but not for survival from all causes. The drug is still experimental for overall survival.

Also, if someone tells you to take another drug (Efflexor) to cope with Arimidex, please remember the drug interactions have not been studied and those combining Tamoxifen with certain antidepressants died sooner. It took 25 years for them to study the fatal casualties of that drug interaction.

Good luck with your decision-making and kudos to you for staying informed.

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Jul 28, 2010 03:16PM chrissyb wrote:

Hi girls, happy to be here and soooo glad to be on Arimidex.  I too have used the ignore button and I hope the newbies learn how to use it also.   Doing the HAPPY DANCE.

I found my peace which gave me strength. 52 at dx. Dx 12/8/2003, IDC, 4cm, Stage IV, Grade 2, 0/12 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 03:17PM Lowrider54 wrote:

Hi Karen

Always be sure to check with the onc about anything anyone recommends to you.  Folks here will relate what has worked for them in hopes that it might work for you.  Everyone is different and that is what makes treating/preventing this disease so difficult.  It may take many different combination of things until the end result is acheived. 

When setting up any treatment plan, all of the treating physicians AND your pharmacy are connected and all the drugs are checked for interactions. 

There are some natural remedies but anything that contains hormones is not going to be suited for us.  Melatonin can aide in a more restful sleep, cranberry supplements can aide in liver, kidney and bladder function that some treatments can effect.

Effexsor is actually an anti-depressant which has an added effect that calms hot flashes and night sweats in some.  I am on a very low dose and with the stage iv dx, it has helped me greatly to cope with my dx.  I don't cry all the time anymore.  I have a pretty decent quality of life most of the time. 

Water is like magic.  Walking is great.  I found that even before I started the Effexsor, if I drank lots of water and took an evening walk, the night sweats diminished but I would still get the hot flashes but not as bad.  Others have said that after the first month or so, those things diminish quite nicely.  It took me 3 months of crying until I finally saw a shrink that specializes in bc mets patients - within a month and medication, I wasn't crying or sweating anymore.   

I have also tried to eliminate as much gluten from my diet - not easy since lots of stuff has it in it - but Chex cereals are mostly gluten free and you can now found things in the regular grocery store instead of having to make a special trip to the natural food store. 

Adopting a generally more healthy diet assists with everything. 

This is what worked for me - check with your treating folks to be sure things will be ok for you before trying anything. 

Success to All

LowRider

Smile...it will make people wonder what you are up to...Initial dx 04/99 - CMF; 9/2009 bone mets Arimidex; 6/2010 Faslodex/Xgeva; 8/2011; abdominal wall invaded, ER/PR flipped to TN, Abraxane/Avastin//Xgeva 09/02/2011; 11/2011Xeloda/Avastin/Xgeva. Dx 9/16/2009, Stage IV, 5/25 nodes, mets, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 03:27PM claire_in_seattle wrote:

For me, anastrazole is a drug with very major potential benefits, and minor side effects.  And so thrilled, that "lighter wallet" is no longer one of them.

I will gladly take a medication that reduces my risk of recurrence by 50%.

I think exercise is the magic bullet here.....both cardio and strength training.  And no, I don't have a "middle aged" body.

I won't know about the other stuff like cholesterol until I get my annual physical in a couple of months.  Meanwhile, I am still rebuilding strength.  I have been on for three months, starting the same week as I started radiation.

Have about 7 pounds I would like to shed, but these were divorce related, so from about 4 years ago.  I appear to be slowly losing weight as pants that were snug a month ago are now loose on my body.  Hope same is true of tight white cropped jeans soon!

Completed all treatment (AC +T, lumpectomy, radiation and 5 years of AIs - anastrazole). Now celebrating every single day for the wonderful life I have been granted. Dx 8/2009, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Jul 28, 2010 03:39PM sue-61 wrote:

Hi all, and thanks for starting the new thread! My only issue is a bit of weight gain; I shall have to take Ruthbru's advice and get my butt moving! Sue

"Always maintain a kind of summer even in the middle of winter"~~~~~ Henry David Thoreau
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Jul 28, 2010 03:50PM kira1234 wrote:

I will have to talk to the  Dr. about Effexor, I like it deals with depression as well as hot flashes. I have never had problems with depression, but things seem so out of wack with me. I had another radiation session today and burst into tears. The ballooon area is getting all red and feels like I have a sun burn. I told the person who puts me through the scan and she said she would tell "him". After the next treatment I found out him was the nurse, and he forgot to tell the Dr. So now I have no idea what to expect.

Karen

Dx 6/2010, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 7/8/2010 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 8/3/2010 Hormonal Therapy 10/5/2010 Aromasin (exemestane) Dx 2/2017, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery Lymph node removal; Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right) Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Jul 28, 2010 04:18PM kira1234 wrote:

Chrissyb,

Thanks for mentioning the igno button, I just had my daughter help me find it. Weight will be an issue for me as well. I already have about 40 pounds to lose. I see many of you talk about walking and exercise. I will be adding these to my daily swim, as well as weight lifting. Please continue with the great ideas.

Karen 

Dx 6/2010, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 7/8/2010 Lumpectomy; Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph node removal; Lymph node removal (Left): Sentinel; Lymph node removal (Right): Sentinel Radiation Therapy 8/3/2010 Hormonal Therapy 10/5/2010 Aromasin (exemestane) Dx 2/2017, ILC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery Lymph node removal; Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right) Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)

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