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Aromatase Inhbitors

susafina
Posts: 134
Joined: May 2010

I have a question for everyone.
Has anyone been placed on these drugs post treatment. I know that they are used in estrogen receptor positive patients in breast cancer. My oncologists have told me they are now being used in uterine cancer patients for one year after treatment.
I have been encouraged to start on them but am not sure what to do because of some of the side effects. I know that estrogen ( beside the ovaries) is released by the adrenal glands and is stored in fat cells. I really feel a little hesitant about starting them.
Any information from anyone would be greaatly appreciated Thanks to all.

SUE

Songflower's picture
Songflower
Posts: 631
Joined: Apr 2009

I took these for 11/2 year after five years of tamoxifen for breast cancer. I developed uterine cancer almost two years ago. I have not read anywhere that these are standard for uterine cancer. Perhaps if the ovaries are left in? Or just for the adrenal glands? It would be interesting to see if they were helpful. Where did you Doctor get his or her information? Was your cancer checked for estrogen receptors? I developed joint pain on femara. Most women I know have tolerated them well. You need to watch for bone loss. Has anyone else out there been prescribed this for uterine cancer?

Diane

Always Hopeful
Posts: 234
Joined: May 2010

I just did a very basic google search and came up with the following study regarding the use of aromatase inhibitors and uterine cancer, as well as a link to other Pubmed studies.

This was a Russian study done in '02 and only for short term/very small # of patient usage. It concludes with, "These data show that short-term treatment with letrozole in the neoadjuvant setting resulted in some positive clinical changes. Longer-term and larger-scale trials of neoadjuvant letrozole in endometrial cancer are warranted." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12381480

A Mt.Sinai '09 study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20014416

A more recent study was done my Memorial Sloan Kettering... Treatment of advanced uterine leiomyosarcoma with aromatase inhibitors. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19932916

Here is the Pubmed.org search link: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=aromatase%20inhibitors%20and%20uterine%20cancer&cmd=correctspelling

Peace and hope, JJ

upsofloating's picture
upsofloating
Posts: 473
Joined: Dec 2009

I also took Femara x4 yrs for breast cancer and as well developed UPSC while on it. Also took tamoxifen 6.5.ys prior. I recall someone on ovarian ca board being prescribed Femara. I opted to d/c femara earlier this year and gyn-onc said it was irrelevant to him if I took it or not. I did exp. Weightb gain and I know bone issues are a problem

susafina
Posts: 134
Joined: May 2010

Hi Everyone,
Thank you for your responses and study information. I did have a total hysterectomy. At my 3 month checkup my surgeon brought it up. He really felt it was important. My tumor was estrogen receptor postive. It was explained to me that most uterine tumors are. I have done a lot of reading and know a lot of the side effects. My medical oncologist had a big discussion about its use in uterine cancer.
I have to have a bone density scan as well as liver fuction tests. They want me to start on Arimidex 1mg daily. I was told that if joint pain occurs I am to stop the drug immediately. I am not looking foward to this since I had bad joint pain with the Taxol.
I will ask my MD's about any information that they can give me, as well as a little research on my own.
Sisterhood
SUE

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2827
Joined: Jun 2010

This is because I also have breast cancer and it is estrogen receptor positive. I'll start on arimidex after I complete radiation for the bc in a few weeks. I will have a Dexascan as soon as I schedule it, but it will be done before I next see medical oncologist mid December. I don't know about liver function tests. I asked my medical oncologist whether my endometrial cancer was tested for estrogen receptors and what effect the arimidex would have on it. She said it probably wasn't tested because (and I hope I have this right) they know that the lining of the uterus is responsive to estrogen anyway. Of course, I forgot to ask my gyn oncologist about it when I saw him Monday. Anyway, medical oncologist said that it is often used in uterine cancer treatment and so it would be serving a dual purpose for me. My endo cancer was Stage 1, Grade 1 and the gyn oncologist and I have never discussed it, and had I had "only" the endo cancer, I don't know if it would have been suggested or not. No other adjunctive treatment was recommended except follow up exams and vaginal vault smears (had my first one Monday).

I too am concerned about side effects, but will just have to wait and see.

Suzanne

faith316
Posts: 25
Joined: Mar 2010

I have leiomyosarcoma (uterine cancer). I had a total hysterectomy with follow up chemo (Gemzar/Taxotere) with internal and external radiation sandwiched in between. Scans have shown slow growth tumors in my lungs and liver. My gyn/onc sent a tumor tissue sample to Caris Labs for analysis. They came back with several options that may be of benefit for my type tumor. One of those options was tamoxifen. My tumor was estrogen/proestrogen receptor negative. I was concerned about the tamoxifen but as I discussed it with my doctor it became clear that one of the primary issues with tamoxifen is with breast cancer patients developing uterine cancer. Since I have no uterus that is not an issue for me. I am currently taking Tamoxifen for 7 days and Megace for 21 days. I will continue this regiment for two months and have a follow up scan to see where we are. So far all is well. Since there are several other options available to us I am hopeful we will find something that the tumors respond to. I am careful to read about the side effects of any medication that I take. I find that checking multiple sources helps me understand which ones are most likely to occur.

lindaprocopio's picture
lindaprocopio
Posts: 2022
Joined: Oct 2008

I was under the impression that if you are ER- and PR-, the likelihood of tamoxifen or megace or other hormone-related drugs working for you was quite low. Both of my oncologists were suggesting a simialr regime as you are taking until I had my tissue assay done that showed my cells as ER- and PR-.

That being said SOMEWHERE in my files I know I have a study printed out that showed that, for some unknown reason, this combo of tamoxifen and megace, DOES work in 30% or so women with ER- and PR- cancers. If you want I can really look for it. It's posted somewher in the archives here, so maybe if you do the SEARCH mechanism on Tamoxifen / Megace, it will turn up.

PLEASE sta in touch with em if you have any success with the pills, as I would love to get a chemo break and just take the pills awhile is there's even a shot they would work.

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