Arimidex is a preventive drug prescribed to women who are in their post menopause phase. The drug is effective against the growth of tumor cells in the breast that usually grow in the presence of estrogen. The drug is prohibitive in nature against the production of estrogen.
Arimidex is an aromatase inhibitor drug that is effective against breast cancer. It is prescribed to women who are diagnosed with hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer after their menopause. The term hormone-receptor-positive is used for those cancer cells that only grow under the presence of a hormone such as estrogen.
The medicine is prescribed to early stage breast cancer patients who have undergone a surgery (it is prescribed to lower the risk of the cancer growing back) or women who have metastatic breast cancer (cancer that is on an advanced level, grown to other parts of the body as well other than breast).
The medicine, however, is not effective against hormone-receptor-negative cancer cells growth.
The usual dosage of Arimidex is a 1 mg tablet per day that is prescribed after surgery. The patient needs to continue the medicine until there’s a progression in the tumor.
The medicine can be taken with or without food as per the doctor’s prescription.
Women with liver diseases can take the usual dosage but the women who have chronic impairment of liver should discuss the use with their doctor.
Since the medicine works against estrogen, the lower estrogen absorption by the bones can lead to frequent fractures. The women who have osteoporosis are not recommended to take this medicine due to its negative impact on the bones. Alternate medicines are prescribed to women with osteoporosis.
The common side effects of Arimidex include joint pain, nausea and vomiting, fatigue and weakness, or sometimes hot flashes.
The uncommon side effects include bowel issues such as constipation, headache, loss of appetite, insomnia, weight gain, dizziness and sometimes vaginal bleeding or vaginal dryness.
Allergic reactions can be more drastic such as development of a rash or development of new lumps in the breast, unexplained swelling of limbs and face, declining vision, chest pain and increased heartbeat.
In any such condition, consult your doctor immediately.
While on Arimidex, make sure to get regular blood workup to see the progress of your disease.
It is very important to take birth control precautions while a woman is on Arimidex. It is unlikely to get pregnant after menopause, but it is still not impossible, so discuss your options of birth control if you are taking Arimidex. This medicine can be highly dangerous for embryo development, so your doctor must know if you are pregnant.
In case of any allergic reaction you experience, immediately call your doctor.
The women with cardiovascular problems can get chest pains while on arimidex. A thorough discussion about cardiovascular disease is a must before starting this medicine. If you’re a patient of osteoporosis or any other bone disease, discuss it with your doctor before the prescription of Arimidex.