Endocrine (hormone) therapy

I got joint pain from the drugs I am on. I am still on Aromasin, but I was on tamoxifen for the first couple of years and then something, my cancer is estrogen receptor positive so I am more receptive to all the female cancers of course. So something showed up on a pap smear, I don’t know a year out, a year and a half out, no I don’t know. Something showed up on a pap smear a while after treatment and they had to do an exploratory because there was something suspicious and so they explained to me at that time that, “Because your estrogen receptor positive, anytime something looks suspicious we probably have to do this exploratory surgery because you’re at a high risk for the other cancer,” and I was like, “Well why are we leaving it there? I am not going to use it again so let’s just take out everything that has anything to do with estrogens.” I had a full hysterectomy done which was another surgery and then they switched me to Aromasin so I am still on Aromasin and my body has been better on the Aromasin than it was on tamoxifen and they say you should stay on the treatment drugs for 3 to 5 years. January was four years since I have been on tamoxifen or Aromasin. So I said that is four years, this January, and I was going to go off, I was still blaming the fact that I was taking these drugs for all these body changes that were going on. I had my gynecologist tell me, “No Joanne some of these effects will still be there. It is not the Aromasin and not the tamoxifen.” So I really wanted to go off just to see. Anyway I had my friends telling me to stay on it for the fifth year because most research says 3 to 5 years don’t make much difference. It is three or five years for whatever reason so I stayed on it, because as they said, “What happens if your cancer comes back in two or three years? Would you be wondering if you stayed on the drug for one more year would it not have come back?” Then I talked to a woman who actually asked to go on it for an extra five years and she is a woman I respect a whole lot and I said, “Really you want to be on it another five years?” But she is having no effects and I’m still blaming the joint pain on the Aromasin. I mean I do get joint pain, a lot of joint pain. So I’m still on them and I am going to be on them for another year yet.

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