Arimidex: What it is used for, its dosage and side effects
Anastrozole lowers estrogen levels in postmenopausal women, which may slow the growth of certain types of breast tumors that need estrogen to grow in the body. Anastrozole belongs to the group of cancer-fighting medications known as antineoplastics, and specifically to the group of antineoplastics known as nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitors. Anastrozole is used to treat breast cancer in postmenopausal women.
How should I take Arimidex?
Arimidex is usually taken once per day. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
- You may take Arimidex with or without food.
- You may need to keep taking this medication for up to 5 years. Follow your doctor's instructions.
- Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
How long to take it
Continue taking ARIMIDEX for as long as your doctor or pharmacist tells you.
ARIMIDEX helps to control your condition, but does not cure it. Therefore you must take ARIMIDEX every day. Do not stop taking it unless your doctor tells you to - even if you feel better.
If you forget to take it
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember, as long as it is 12 hours before the next dose is due. If it is less than 12 hours to the next dose, do not take the dose you have missed.
Do not double the dose to make up for the dose that you missed.
What side effects are possible with this medication?
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.
- hair thinning
- hot flashes
- increased or decreased appetite
- muscle stiffness
- nausea or vomiting
- pain in muscles, bones, or joints
- skin rash
- taste changes
- trouble sleeping
- vaginal dryness
- weight gain
WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT INFORMATION I SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ANASTROZOLE (ARIMIDEX)?
Do not use anastrozole if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby.
- You may need to take a pregnancy test before using anastrozole, to make sure you are not pregnant.
- You should not use this medication if you are allergic to anastrozole, if you are breast-feeding a baby, or if you have not yet completed menopause. Anastrozole is not for use in men or children.
- Before using anastrozole, tell your doctor if you have heart disease, circulation problems, a history of stroke or blood clot, severe liver disease, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, or low bone mineral density.
- Anastrozole may not work as well if you take it together with tamoxifen or an estrogen medication (such as hormone replacement therapy, estrogen creams, or birth control pills, injections, implants, skin patches, and vaginal rings). Before you start taking anastrozole, tell your doctor if you also take tamoxifen or estrogen.
You may need to keep taking anastrozole for up to 5 years. Follow your doctor's instructions.