I’ve been taking Anastrozole since January, 2014. Initially, the doctor told me I would only need to take it for 5 years. I’ve since moved out of state and the new doctor is recommending I take it longer, possibly another 5 years! I’ve had severe hair loss and joint pain, not to mention hot flashes! I’m 71 years old. Does anyone have any current information regarding how long to take this drug. Thank you all!
I too was initially told 5 years of Letrozole. I have friends who in the last couple of years have been told 10 as they are finding the 10 may be better. Last summer at the end of my 5 years my Onc. recommended a Breast Cancer Index Test to see if I could stop or would benefit by another 5 years. They sent a piece of my original tumor to a special lab and it was determined my recurrence rate was only 5.7% so another 5 years would not benefit me so I was taken off of the Letrozole. Like she told me it’s no guarantee it won’t recur but I like my odds. BTW-if you are on Medicare like I am they will pay for the entire test, about $5,000. or so otherwise. Talk with the new doctor and see what they say.
Thank you for your comments. I appreciate you taking the time. I will see my doctor in January, but she is not my original doctor. A year after the cancer I moved out of state closer to my daughter. All my records were sent to the new doctor, but not sure that she could do any further testing. Appreciate your input, wishing you all the best!
I had moved after my surgery and chemo. also. I contacted the lab to make sure they had some tissue left as I had done the OncoType DX test which also used a piece of the tissue. They had it so gave that info. to my new Onc. and they submitted the paperwork the lab needed so they could send it on to the speciality lab in California. I wish you well, also.
I was diagnosed w/BC in Jun 2016. I live in NWA and receive wonderful medical care. We are considering moving to Austin TX where our daughter lives. My question is for Post#3 & Post#4 ( and any others who have relocated) how difficult is it finding new caregivers in your new location? And are you satisfied w/the care you’re receiving?
I had no issues finding a “new team”. I just checked my insurance company I had at the time and found doctors in my network. I am very satisfied with my care and thankfully once I went on Medicare they accept assignment so I didn’t need to look again. I wish you well.
This would be a good study to bring up for discussion with your MedOnc. It studies giving intermittent “holidays” in extended Letrizole treatment. If I’m able to gut through the AI’s side effects in the first five years (questionable at this point) I would definitely advocate this plan for years 6-10. It’s specific to Letrizole, but maybe your MedOnc would consider a similar approach with the other two AIs (exemistane and anastrozole).