May 23, 2009
Since beginning daily regimen of Arimidex, I find myself going through menopause yet again! I went through this early in 2000 and it was a breeze compared to what I'm experiencing now. This time the hot flashes/night sweats, etc. are multiplied tenfold! I also now have daily "bone" pain - for lack of better definition -- as well as severe pain in breast at tumor sites. This pain in breast is a good thing as in my case, means that the targeted therapy is indeed working! I also take hydrocone as needed - usually only for 10-14 days after Herceptin treatment - and although it does not completely remove the pain, I can better manage my normal daily activities.My onco suggested that because I am having severe side effects I have the option to stop Arimidex for a couple of weeks to see if side effects lessen, and then perhaps switch from Arimidex to another AI. These side effects are more tolerable now that the summer weather is here. I have decided to continue with Arimidex because it is proving to bring my numbers down and shrink tumors. Of course there is no guarantee that another similar drug will work, so I do not want to switch at this time. Following up with onco every 3 months for CT scan/tumor markers.
Additionally, I am taking Ambien to aid in sleeping. Not working as hoped for--but will meet with doctor this week to seek alternative med.
Last but not least, my heart is also being monitored because of the possible effects of Herceptin. To date, I only experience slightly elevated blood pressure and heart palpitations, but for the most part, thank God, my heart function is just fine!