Hormone Therapy VideoMacromedia Flash
Breast Cancer 101 (Interactive Multimedia) - Side Effects of TamoxifenMacromedia Flash
If you have hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, hormone therapy with tamoxifen and/or an aromatase inhibitor is a key part of your treatment.
Compared to chemotherapy, tamoxifen has few side effects. For example, tamoxifen does not cause hair loss. However, menopausal symptoms, like hot flashes, are common in women who take tamoxifen . Although these symptoms may become less frequent and less intense over time, they can still be hard to manage. If you have any symptoms, talk to your health care provider. He/she can help treat many of them.
The most serious health risks of tamoxifen, such as endometrial cancer (cancer of the lining of the uterus) and blood clots in the lungs, are very rare .
Figure 5.10 lists some possible side effects and health risks of tamoxifen in women.
In men, possible side effects include [62-63]:
Although both aromatase inhibitors and tamoxifen can cause menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, many of their side effects differ. Learn more about how the side effects of these hormone therapies compare.
Komen Support Resources
In addition to treating breast cancer, tamoxifen has other health benefits. Tamoxifen may:
Cancer-free women who have a high risk of developing breast cancer (including those with atypical hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ) can take tamoxifen to lower their risk .
Learn more about risk-lowering drugs and other options for women at high risk of breast cancer.