aromatase inhibitors

xmas lamp post poster edges

Yesterday I went to Holy Redeemer Hospital to meet with Dr. Pallav Mehta, MD who is on staff in the hematology/oncology unit.  The purpose of this meeting was to discuss follow-up drug therapy since my tumor was strongly positive for estrogen/progesterone receptors. Dr. Mehta started out by reviewing my breast cancer history and told me that my prognosis is excellent with a 95% chance of remaining cancer free. He reiterated that my tumor was non-aggressive, very small, and caught early.

However, because of the tumor being hormone driven, he recommended that I go on an aromatase inhibitor called Arimidex for five years. The side effects include possible joint pain due to the drug drying up synovial fluid and a loss of bone density. He said that if I go on the drug I increase my chances of remaining cancer free to 97% but cited only a 25-30% success rate of the drug performance.  Naturally, I asked him if he could recommend a more holistic approach. He brought up diet and nutrition and mentioned soy.  He was not familiar with any plant-based supplements, so as soon as I got home I started researching online. I found an excellent blog post by Elyn Jacobs that discusses “natural alternatives to aromatase inhibitors.”

Based on my early research and excellent prognosis, I am strongly leaning towards a nutritional approach to managing the “bad” estrogen so that I do not lose the positive health benefits of the “good” estrogen. I will keep you posted on further findings and my final decision.

In closing, I send belated Hanukkah good wishes, Christmas greetings, and warm wishes for a happy and healthy 2013 to all.

. . . and so it is

9 thoughts on “aromatase inhibitors

  1. elynjacobs says:

    Thank you! I am glad my post was helpful. Considering what crucifers can do to cancer, I find it stunning how few doctors are paying attention to the natural wonders of food….I’ll bet they can’t say that Arimidex can kill cancer cells while it is managing estrogen, and broccoli lack side effects. Holiday wishes to you too!

  2. Cathy Guenzel says:

    Oh Deb, I think that sounds very wise. Go with your instincts, wholistic
    rather than the horrible negative side effects of drugs. Heading off with Kerrigan to our last class before the break. Take care…Cathy

  3. Fran says:

    Deb, Good research! Sounds like an excellent choice. Best wishes – Fran

  4. Loretta Shatt says:

    Deb, these side effects sound worse than the 2% additional chance to remain cancer-free these drugs MIGHT be providing. Your research also helps me as it reinforces my belief in natural remedies. Thank you. Take care, Loretta

  5. Malou Walther says:

    This is just more proof that one must be one’s own advocate. You are very good about the research and decision making Debbie.


    • mgrookett says:

      I was on Arimidix for a short time and experienced severe joint pain, so they put me on Aromisin, with no problems. If you can go natural, that is the way to do it

  6. Nadine Simms says:

    Good for you Debbbie! Happy Holidays! Nadine

  7. Dolores Esposito says:

    I’m certain you’ll make a decision that’s best for YOU! You’re such an inspiration to me. Through all your pain and suffering, you continue to research and share your knowledge. Thanks for being you!

  8. Bille Jean says:

    Hi Deb, thanks for the information and the good research. With all this good news hopefully you’re having a wonderful holiday!
    Blessings to you dear Deb

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