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Arimidex - side effects

Hi, I'm Carole

Finished treatment for breast cancer in September (2 surgeries, including lymph nodes) and now on Arimidex as of around August. Starting to have side effects of hot flashes and aches and pains that affect my sleep. Need to know everything I can do to mitigate the pain, please! I work full time, and travel for business a good bit too, so I cannot be sleepy during the day. (So take Arimidex at night.). I used to be great at daily exercise but have to do it in the early AM, and can’t seem to get up that early any more. I know I need to carve out time for it though. I am taking Vit D3, Glucosamine and Calcium now. I take Lunesta to sleep now but can’t stay on that forever – I fear it could cause long-term cognitive issues. I have heard Claritin helps? (Not sure how that helps but I have heard from multiple sources.). Anything else? Thank you!!!

  • Post #1
  • Sun Dec 3, 2017
Hi, I'm Carole

No response at all? Pls help?

  • Post #2
  • Sun Jan 14, 2018
Hi, I'm Judith F.

Carole, sorry that nobody responded. I started Arimidex just over 5 years ago. I too, had severe hot flashes and joint pains. I was offered Effixor (sp?) which is said to help alleviate some of the symptoms and several people swear by it but it is an antidepressant so I chose not to take it. When I had gone through menopause, I took Estroven which is a soy supplement but because I was ER+, I could not take it as soy is an artificial estrogen. I was told to take vitamin E which helped some but not enough. Much to my oncologist’s dismay, I bought a pill cutter and cut that little 1 mg pill in half. By doing that it reduced the pain and hot flashes quite a bit. I also took it in the morning instead of at night which might help. I know there are others who will have other suggestions. I think it depends on your situation. I know that my doctor wanted me to continue but at least for now, I have been off of it for a few months and am feeling much better. Good luck at finding what works best for you.

  • Post #3
  • Sun Jan 21, 2018
I'm Jo Dee N., and I'm a survivor of Stage 2 Breast Cancer
Hi Carole, I’m sorry I haven’t been on here in a couple of days, I have been taking Arimidex\Anastrozole since August of 2016, I have some hot flashes, a lot of joint pain, I can’t sleep and I get tired easy. Claritin-D does help with the joint pain. the hot flashes don’t happen very often so I’m not sure what to do for those. I also take the medicine at night. I take calcium +vitamin-D and vitamin B complex. I take advil also it helps with joint pain. Has your oncologist recommended anything? Good luck in finding a solution
  • Post #4
  • Mon Jan 22, 2018
I'm Teri R., and I'm a survivor of Breast Cancer

Started taking Anastrozole Jan. 26, 2018. So far not being able to sleep at night has been the main side effect. According to the Fitbit I toss and turn about 5 hours a night, so getting very little sleep. I take Vanlafaxine for the hot flashes and it seems to be working. I had taken hormone replacment therapy for hot flashes for several years and stopped as soon as I was diagnosed, of course they came back with a vengeance. Since I started taking the vanlafaxine, they are hardly noticeable.

  • Post #5
  • Thu Feb 8, 2018
I'm JennyS, and I'm a survivor of Stage 3c Breast Cancer

Yes, pain is definitely an issue for me too. I’ve been on the zoladex shot and the AI inhibitors daily for the last 9 months. Exercise regularly really does help, but I still needed something so I could sleep. The dr that works with my oncologist told me to try CBD oil capsules nightly (and they work!! But they can also increase hot flashes), fish oil and turmeric capsules daily, and red raspberry leaf capsules for hot flashes. But I have to be faithful and take them daily! I still need an ibuprofen or tylenol a few days a weeks, but it is tons better than it was. As far as rx meds go. I still take gabapentin nightly to help with the hot flashes and I did go on the lowest dose of cymbalta to help with the pain as well. I didn’t like the blah feeling so I just do it every other night and it works like a charm. It did get better for me with time. Be patient and I hope one of these things helps.

  • Post #6
  • Fri Feb 9, 2018
Hi, I'm Carole

Thank you all – I see several recommendations that I will try and then share back how they work, so maybe others can benefit. This Arimidex really makes me hurt all over most of the time. I can function but not like I used to!

  • Post #7
  • Sun Feb 11, 2018
Hi, I'm larud

Fish oil (careful as many are made with soy) and turmeric capsules. Not sure how much it is helping. I do have joint pain but it is day to day as to how bad. I also take a quarter of an Ambien every night as I can’t function without sleep. My legs hurt when I wake up each morning. My hips hurt during the day. Make myself walk the dog each day and try to do stretching exercises at night. Also take D3 as I am low and a vitamin every other day. I’m doing everything I can to stay on this as long as possible.

  • Post #8
  • Sun Feb 18, 2018

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