Reviews for Anastrozole

Anastrozole

Anastrozole is a prescription drug, available in the form of an oral tablet. This tablet is available as the brand name called Arimidex. This drug is anti-cancer hormone therapy and is classified as a non-steroidal aromatase inhibitor. Anastrozole, like letrozole, is a non-steroidal aromatase inhibitor (AI) used to lower circulating oestrogen levels in postmenopausal women with estrogen-responsive breast cancer. It is similar to exemestane, a steroidal AI, but its non-steroidal nature offers significant benefits, such as the absence of steroid-related side effects like weight gain and acne.

How it works

Anastrozole belongs to a class of drugs called aromatase inhibitors. They block the production of estrogen, which is a key stimulator of breast cancer. A class of drugs refers to medications that work similarly. They have a similar chemical structure and are often used to treat similar conditions.
In postmenopausal women, an enzyme called aromatase changes hormones called androgens into the hormone estrogen. Many breast cancer tumors grow when estrogen is present. Anastrozole stops aromatase from working. This lowers the amount of estrogen in your body and in the cancer tissue.

User Reviews for Anastrozole

Rabbit·Taken for 1 to 2 years·March 17, 2021
For Breast Cancer: “I was diagnosed with stage I breast cancer, estrogen receptor positive, in May 2019; had lumpectomy, radiation and have been on anastrazole since September 2019. I am so sorry to hear of all the negative side-effects being experienced. Fortunately, I have had no side-effects since starting anastrozole and I just wanted to make a statement so that all patients are not disheartened and there can be positive experiences using anastrazole. I’m not sure why so many have side-effects, although I can’t seem to find statistics. I am now 71 years old, in otherwise very good health, eat a healthy diet, walk, hike (strenuous), dance, read a lot of novels, and watch a lot of movies, volunteer at a food pantry 3x/week. Please keep a positive attitude and keep an active lifestyle as much as possible. Good luck to all of us survivors!!”
Kk·Taken for 2 to 5 years·January 19, 2020
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “Taken anastrazole for 4 years. Having debilitating joint pain, difficulty walking. Will definitely need to consider stopping this medication. Need quality of life. Don’t let the physicians make you feel like your crazy!”
Polly·Taken for 6 months to 1 year·October 17, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I was diagnosed stage 1b Lumpectomy, 4 weeks of radiation then Arimidex. Well the side affects are too much for me. The bone pain was excruciating, it woke me up at night. Fatigue, headache, nausea, foggy brain, I do yoga and walk 3 days a week. I have decided to go a natural path. Do the research for yourself before you make your on decisions. I just want a good quality of life back! I wish you all well.”
Wednesday·Taken for less than 1 month·March 25, 2019
For Breast Cancer: “I have just had a lumpectomy for a very small, 4mm, hormone receptive cancer. I have almost finished my 3 weeks of radiation and now they want me to take this drug. There are very few positive remarks pertaining to it and at this stage I am pretty active with no aches and pains, breezed through menopause and am well. I was told even without the radiation there was a 95% chance that the cancer would not reoccur. They got clear margins and my sentinel node biopsy was clear. The radiation is supposed to have gained me another 2.5%. I am having trouble convincing the medical personnel that I don’t want to take this drug due to all the side effects. I am 68 and don’t want to experience 5 years of pain and discomfit for the minuscule benefit this drug is going to bring. Am I wrong?”
D·Taken for 1 to 6 months·June 21, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I took Arimidex for 6 months. I have been off it for almost a month. My hands ache and I have trigger finger in both hands. I have joint pain in both my upper and lower extremeties. I have had weight gain and my blood pressure stays high. My doctor change my prescription to tamoxifen. My side effects from the Arimidex are not going away. I can barely use my hands. My job is very physical and hands on. I am 57. Too young to retire and all my back up skills require my hands. This medication is what will kill me, not the cancer.”
caramel53·Taken for 5 to 10 years·April 4, 2018
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “Diagnosed at with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma, Stage 1-no lymph nodes involved. Had Lumpectomy, Brachial Therapy Radiation and 5 rounds of chemotherapy. I was ER-Positive, therefore, chemo was recommended because after Oncotype DX done, it showed I had a 16% chance of cancer coming back. I have been on Arimidex going on 7 seven years. Initially, lots of stiffness, but I hired a personal trainer, I weight train, run, and do yoga. Praise GOD, I’m doing very well and no stiffness!! Don’t settle for what the drug is doing-work on you and you may be surprised how much better you will feel if you incorporate some exercise into your routine! God Bless!”
Arones47·November 7, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I took it for 5 years and just stopped on October 31st. This drug is TERRIBLE. It destroys your bones, causes hip joint pain so bad that you lose your balance, causes hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, constipation, heart palpitations, spinal pain, loss of bone density which causes OSTEOPENIA which can lead to OSTEOPOROSIS and more. Its disgusting that this is basically the only one you can take other than tamoxifen. Your oncologist SHOULD tell you what the side effects are going to do so that you can somehow prepare for them. Mine prescribed GABAPENTIN for the hot flashes, night sweats and insomnia. Arimidex has to be taken for only 5 years and no more. Hopefully the weakness in my hip joints will ease, the pain in my bones, the constipation, heart palpitations. You will never get back the bone loss. I’m taking high doses of OTC vitamin C & D.”
Ukey·Taken for 2 to 5 years·July 2, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “Finished my 5 years of therapy May 6th & was counting down the last 6 months leading up to that date! I would sweat so bad while on it, very intolerant of heat & now that I am off it I feel pretty warm sometimes but the sweat doesn’t drip like it used to, thank goodness! Have been getting a little more sleep since stopping it (was only sleeping at the most, 4 hours at a time, while on the anastrozole), I am noticing much less hair loss in the shower, I don’t get the odd, slight queasy feeling in the mornings anymore & my general mood has improved- at least, I think so! ”
JoJo·April 4, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I lasted 5 weeks on Armidex for my breast cancer. I stopped taking it because of the side effects. I’ve been off it 5 weeks while I research & decide what to do before discussing with my oncologist. I’m 58 years old & had no significant medical history. I have occasional neck pain a physically active job from which I am retired. This drug caused extreme joint & bone pain. Before surgery I was flipping tires & doing box jumps at the gym. This drug made me feel too bad to go for a walk. Other side effects included all over itching, dry hair, dry skin, dry eyes, insomnia, nightmares, nausea. The pharmacist told me the only side effect would be dizziness which I did not have. I didn’t research further. I was so happy the radiation was done & thought taking a pill would me no big deal. I’d experienced hot flashes and night flashes for years so those were not new. When I googled the drug I found many women had the same side effects. The bone density issue is alarming.”
Tekteacher·Taken for 2 to 5 years·October 24, 2016
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “Taking Arimidex for just short of four years. Horrible bone and joint pain. Pain meds leave me unable to function. Insomnia, shortness of breath, chest pains. Thousands of dollars on tests that show nothing. Treated like a nut case. Oncologist finally said stop taking it, but gave me nothing for pain. Trip to ER , prescribed oxycodone which works, but knocks me out and grog continues for two days after taking it! Oncologist says recurrence is 8% without Arimidex, 5% with it. I will not continue this torture for a mere 3%! This is no way to live.”
Grammyp·Taken for 2 to 5 years·February 14, 2019
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I am 60 and have been on Arimidex going on 4 years now for stage 2 invasive lobular breast cancer. Initially I experienced trigger finger but that went away after a few months. I have also experienced slight weight gain (5 lbs), insomnia & hot flashes regularly. I exercise everyday to keep my bones strong and luckily I have no joint or bone pain. I just noticed recently thinning hair after 4 years on this. My Dr. says they recommend another 5 years after next year so it will be 10 years total. I think for me the worst side effect is the hot flashes but it’s ok! I’m still here! :)”
Angry Nana·September 20, 2015
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I only took Arimidex for 1 month, after having a mastectomy. During that month I experienced severe joint pain, nausea, headaches, shortness of breath, and finally, a severe asthma attack which convinced me that I needed to stop this drug. Almost immediately, all side effects disappeared. Now, eight months after stopping Arimidex, and taking nothing else, I have quite severe Rheumatoid arthritis. I was previously fit and active. I am 70 years old. I would rather take my chances with the cancer returning than take this drug again.”
Kacie·Taken for 2 to 5 years·March 21, 2020
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer, Metastatic: “I’ve been taking Arimidex for 4 years for breast cancer mets. I was diagnosed with the mets to the bone in Jan/16. I’m to the point that I feel I just can’t take this drug anymore, so I stopped today. I want to stop hurting so bad. I feel terrible in the morning when I try to get up. I can no longer manage steps, standing for any length of time, walking is history. I’m on major amounts of narcotics but don’t get nearly as much relief as I’d like. I just can’t do it anymore. My life has no quality, this drug is not worth the amount of pain it causes!! So long Arimidex!”
Lealmck·Taken for 5 to 10 years·February 26, 2014
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I took it for 5 yrs. and 2 months. I cannot say if the changes were from chemo or from Arimidex. Changes in taste and smell persist. Frontal headache, blurred vision, cough, calcium loss – osteopenia. Stiff joints, long bone pain, sciatica pain of right leg, fatigue, wicked insomnia, hot flushes & flashes. Neuropathy in hands and feet, specially balls of feet and very sensitive tips of toes. Very dry skin, aged face, hair is very thin and breaking easily. Never got back full eyebrows, very SAD! I loved my eyebrows.”
Rocky·February 28, 2020
For Breast Cancer: “I’m 66. I’ve been on Arimidex 6 months. That was following a lumpectomy (stage 1 invasive ductile carcinoma 1.6 cm) and 33 radiation treatments. The first month I had no side effects. Second month I started to get sleep disruption, mood swings. Now I’ve progressed to having joint pain, worst in my left shoulder and elbow ( surgery side) Pain in left chest/breast where the tumor was removed. In the last two weeks my right thumb started to stiffen up – trigger finger. Sleep disruption went away after a month but it has returned during the sixth month. I was taking Arimidex 2 hours before bed & I’m going to try taking it first thing in the morning and see if it stops the sleep disruption. In the last month or two I have started to feel basically unwell & very stiff, especially when I wake up in the morning and I’m feeling kind of depressed. I do yoga twice a week and try to walk twice a week as well. Perhaps I will increase my exercise Blessings. Good luck to you.”
Moni·January 6, 2020
For Breast Cancer: “I had stage I lobular breast cancer, with clear lymph nodes. I chose a skin spearing mastectomy and no radiation or chemo. I will complete my five years of anastrozole treatment in two months. I am 67 years old, and I have to say, I did not have all those side effects as I many women in this site have had. I did loose a lot of hair( but Rogaine has helped a lot). I I am tired often but still have a lot of energy once I get up. The medicine has affected my bones, since before I started taking I had osteopenia. Although this medicine is very hard on your bones and joints, I have never thought of stop taking it. Maybe because I never had hot flashes or insomnia I have been able to tolerate it and I personally don’t think it’s so horrible. I highly recommend to stick with the treatment. Five years go by pretty quick.”
Oregon 2013·March 20, 2013
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “I have had the hot flashes, and the weight gain. Not much of the other side effects so far. Not willing to keep gaining the weight, talked to my oncologist but he says the weight gain is not from the Arimidex. I know better, I have always been very very careful with my weight and going on this medication is the only time I have had the weight gain. I stopped it for 5 weeks and lost, went back on the Arimidex and the weight came back. I work out 5 to 7 days a week so I am very active. ”
McD333·January 9, 2013
Arimidex (anastrozole) for Breast Cancer: “Started taking Arimidex in June and have lost 45lbs. Vomiting and diarrhea have left me homebound. I keep starting and stopping this pill. Oncologist thinks I’m crazy, but when I stop the pill the vomiting and diarrhea stop. Just stopped taking it before Christmas and I’m feeling so much better. Have had two lumpectomies and a mastectomy. Don’t want the cancer to return, but the side effects are too much for me.”
EeoyreFan·May 31, 2020
For Breast Cancer: “DX: breast cancer (BC) stage 1, lumpectomy w/lymph nodes removed followed by radiation. Started anastrozole after radiation. Initially had substantial hot flashes & insomnia but these stopped after 3 weeks. Then joint pain started, increasing so that after 6 months I could not sit or stand for more than 1/2 hour w/o being in terrible pain. If I had to squat, my knee joints would freeze & I could only stand by pulling myself up using my arms. After 1 year I’d gained 20 lbs & shuffling a mile was all I could do for exercise. Doc was skeptical that anastrozole was causing the symptoms but suggested going off it for 2 weeks. At the end of those weeks most of the joint pain had gone! Went back on anastrozole. In 2 months the joint pain to return but I was determined to tough it out. Saw the doctor this week, year 2. So thankful no BC recurrence, but have gained 20 more lbs. My mood is down. My hands & ankles are swollen like sausages. Simple chores are agony & exhausting. Now switching to tamoxifen…”

Summary

Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.