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#13871 - 08/19/04 07:07 AM cancer drugs?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Has anyone ever taken any drugs to prevent the reoccurrence of cancer?

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#13872 - 08/19/04 04:24 AM Re: cancer drugs?
Lynn Offline
Member

Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 621
Loc: pennsylvania
Dots,

Give us some more information. Are you talking Tamoxifen? Some chemos?

I have a friend who is taking a drug after her breast cancer. That was 9 years ago and was part of Dr. Chang's recent study. Can't remember the drug but the results were great.

Please give more info.

Lynn

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#13873 - 08/19/04 10:51 AM Re: cancer drugs?
meredithbead Offline
The Divine Ms M

Registered: 07/07/03
Posts: 4894
Loc: Orange County, California
Said this before, but since you asked again...

5 years on Tamoxifen (Nolvadex)
the past 7 months on Femara (Letrozole)

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#13874 - 08/19/04 06:34 PM Re: cancer drugs?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Meredith, I knew you had taken Tamoxifen, but couldn't remember what you were taking now. I was too lazy to search for the post. Sorry.

My sister started taking Femara a couple weeks ago after finishing her 33 radiation treatments. Did you have any side effects when you first started taking it?

I know your case is different because you were on the other medication first, but I just thought I'd ask.

Lynn, does this give you a better picture? Is your hubby taking oral meds at this stage of the game?

Femara is to prevent the cancer from returning.

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#13875 - 08/20/04 03:24 AM Re: cancer drugs?
Lynn Offline
Member

Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 621
Loc: pennsylvania
John is not taking anything to keep the cancer from returning but poses a good question when we go back to Hopkins 9/9.

My friend is taking Femara and has been for about a year. She had previously been on Tamoxifen. Femara is newly available I believe and I thought it was for breast cancer only.

There are so many different kinds of cancers not just different locations. Very complex.

Lynn

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#13876 - 08/20/04 05:25 PM Re: cancer drugs?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Lynn, will you be up and at 'em by then? Isn't your surgery soon?

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#13877 - 08/21/04 10:49 AM Re: cancer drugs?
meredithbead Offline
The Divine Ms M

Registered: 07/07/03
Posts: 4894
Loc: Orange County, California
Tamoxifen fools the receptors into thinking it's estrogen, so cancer cells lock into the Tamoxifen instead.

Femara completely shuts down estrogen production. It's used for any estrogen-positive cancers. Some breast cancers are estrogen-positive and some are negative. For estroge-negative cancers there's another class of drugs called aromatase inhibitors, such as Irimidex.

One of the possible side effects of Femara is bone loss. I had a baseline bone density test in February and will repeat yearly. If there's significant loss I may start Fossamax. Another side effect -- not on the insert sheet, but my oncologist says it's not uncommon -- is worsening of existing arthritis conditions. Unfortunately, I have this and some days everything hurts, which it didn't before. I was thinking of starting a post in health. Maybe I'll go there now.

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#13878 - 08/21/04 03:45 PM Re: cancer drugs?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
meredith, thanks for the information. Like you, my sister has educated herself tremendously about cancer and the drug treatments. I'm even learning a little.

I'll share your information with her jsut in case she hasn't heard the information about bone density.

Since she had DCIS which is a very early stage cancer, she sometimes wondered if she should carry on with the drugs. As long as the side effects aren't too bad, she's decided to stick with it. She hopes she doesn't have to take more drugs to deal with the side effects. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about.

I've got to get her in here. I know she'd love it.

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