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Posts: 252
Joined: Apr 2002

I had my last AC on Friday and will start radiation towards the end of June. For those of you that did both chemo and rads, did you start Tamoxifen during or after radiation. TIA!

Posts: 682
Joined: Feb 2001

The standard protocol is to start tamoxifen after the chemo and radiation.

Some people have taken tamoxifen right along with chemo before radiation and then continued thru the radiation with both. The latest annual ASCO meeting ( American Society of Clinical Oncologists ) reported that tamoxifen was more effective AFTER chemo. Nothing was said about taking it with radiation.

My oncologist said to start taking it with radiation - I looked all over the internet for guidelines and there were none. My doctor said that was because they didn't know whether it made a difference.

Well, I ignored him and stayed with the standard protocol - which after the fact did not seem to bother or interest him at all.

Later I read that some oncologists thought it was better not to combine the two because radiation needs active cells to kill - and tamoxifen puts them at rest. That is the same reason the latest report of ASCO in May '02 gave for keeping chemo and tamoxifen separate.

I'll be interested in what your doctors tell you to do - keep in touch.


Posts: 252
Joined: Apr 2002

Thanks so much for the info. I forgot to ask my doc on Friday - too many other questions, so I'll ask him later this week and let you know what he says.

Posts: 13
Joined: May 2002

I had 1 year of chemo and 6 weeks of radiation treatments for inflammatory breast cancer. I started taking Tamoxifen in Oct. 1997 after I finished radiation. I'm scheduled to stop taking the Tamoxifen in about 4 months. So far, I'm doing well. I wish you all the best.

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