Supporting women whose lives have been touched by breast cancer


by s

I felt fortunate to be given arimidex back in March 2005 because it wasn't available everywhere and the reports were already showing a better outcome for those who took it.

The first tablets were taken with great trepidation as the list of side effects was rather daunting - but nothing happened. I was surprised that no one wanted to measure my oestrogen levels but was told that was because they would be too low to be measured.

So I realised I was taking a pill that couldn't be monitored and where one dose fits all sizes. This took a bit of effort to get my head round - but the trial results were really good.

My interpretation of how it works is that without oestrogen the body becomes older so all the side effects are basically what would happen to us anyway - in 20 - 30 + years time. The joints become creaky, your body wants oestrogen so lays down fat [after all it is pre-programmed to produce the stuff that way], hair and skin age etc.

On the other hand every time I have blamed the arimidex for a 'side effect' it has turned out to have an entirely different cause. So please don't just blame arimidex and decide to put up with something - tell your GP and let him/her decide.

The creaking for the first few steps after getting out of bed is about the only side effect I can entirely lay at the door of arimidex and that is made worse by lots of exercise ....

I have now been taking it for 4 years and have mixed feelings about only having another 11 months to go. While being hopeful that the creaky joints will diminish it really is a comfort blanket and I still feel fortunate to be taking it.