What is Anastrozole?
Anastrozole is a medication used to treat early breast cancer in women who have gone through menopause. This medication has been listed in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) List of Essential Medicines. It is commonly marketed under the brand name, Arimidex.
What is Arimidex and how does it work?
Arimidex/Anastrozole works by lowering estrogen levels in women. Estrogen can increase the severity of breast cancer. The medication prevents the production of estrogen hormones which help in the growth of various breast cancer cells.
What is Anastrozole used for?
This medication can be used alone or in combination with other medicines, radiation or surgery to treat early breast cancer. In some cases, this medication can also be given to prevent breast cancer in women who are at a high risk of developing one.
How to take Anastrozole?
Anastrozole is mostly available in the form of tablets in different strengths. You must consult your doctor before taking this medication. A doctor will diagnose your condition and prescribe you the right dosage. Depending on the doctor’s directions, you can take the medication orally with food or water.
Make sure you do not take less or more than the prescribed dosage. Also remember that since the tablet’s ingredients can be easily absorbed by the skin, pregnant women should refrain from handling this medication.
This medication needs to be kept out of the reach of children and stored in a dry place.
If you think you may have taken more than the prescribed dose, call your local poison control center for immediate assistance.
What Precautions should I take with Anastrozole?
Before taking Anastrozole, you must inform your doctor if you have the following,
- If you have any allergies
- If you have liver disease
- If you suffer from heart disease
- If you have high blood pressure
- If you have osteoporosis (brittle bone disease)
- If you have blood clots
- If you’ve gone through menopause
- If you are taking a prescription or non-prescription medication
- If you are taking any herbal or nutritional supplements
- If you are taking any other medication which contains estrogen
- If you are undergoing hormone replacement therapy
- If you use hormonal contraceptives
- If you have high cholesterol
- If you are breast feeding
- If you are pregnant
Anastrozole can be harmful to an unborn baby and should not be used during pregnancy. Also avoid using this medication if you are breast-feeding.
This medication can make you dizzy, so avoid driving or doing anything which requires you to be alert. Also avoid or limit alcohol intake while taking this mediation.
What are the side effects of Anastrozole?
Some of the common side effects associated with this medication are:
- Hot flashes
- Stomach pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Weight gain
- Muscle, joint or bone pain
- Depression and mood changes
- Vaginal bleeding
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Breast pain
- Dry mouth
- Thinning hair
- Tingling feeling in the hands and feet
If the following serious side effects occur, see your doctor immediately:
- Sore throat, cough, fever, chills or any other signs of infection
- Difficulty urinating
- Chest pain
- Pain in the upper right side of the stomach
- Blurred vision
- Yellowing of the eyes and skin
- Rashes and hives
- Difficulty swallowing or breathing
- Shortness of breath
- Swelling of the eyes, tongue, lips, face, hands, ankles, feet or lower legs
If any of the above mentioned side effects persist or worsen, get medical attention immediately.
Anastrozole tablets are available in different quantities from local and online pharmacies such as HealthWarehouse.com. The price of Anastrazole may vary according to the quantity.
IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
ANASTROZOLE - ORAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Arimidex
USES: This medication is used to treat breast cancer in women who have gone through "the change of life" (menopause). Anastrozole works by lowering estrogen hormone levels to help shrink tumors and slow their growth.
HOW TO USE: Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually once a day, or as directed by your doctor. Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time each day. Do not increase your dose or take this medication more often without your doctor's approval. Your condition will not improve any faster and the risk of serious side effects may be increased. Since this drug can be absorbed through the skin, women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant should not handle or break the tablets of this medication.
SIDE EFFECTS: Constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, upset stomach, loss of appetite, body aches and pains, breast swelling/tenderness/pain, headache, dry mouth, scratchy throat, increased cough, dizziness, trouble sleeping, tiredness/weakness, flushing and sweating (hot flashes/hot flushes), vaginal bleeding, hair thinning, and weight change can occur. Changes in diet such as eating several small meals may help lessen the chance of nausea and vomiting. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: mental/mood changes (e.g., depression), numbness/tingling/swelling of the hands or feet, persistent cough, unusual vaginal discharge/burning/itching/odor, unusually stiff muscles, pain/redness/swelling of the arms or legs, vision changes, bone pain, bone fracture, signs of infection (e.g., fever, chills, persistent sore throat). Seek immediate medical attention if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: chest pain, jaw/left arm pain, trouble breathing, confusion, fainting, slurred speech, weakness on one side of the body. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
PRECAUTIONS: Before taking anastrozole, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: liver disease, high blood pressure, heart disease (such as ischemic heart disease, history of chest pain), brittle bone disease (osteoporosis), blood clots. This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Anastrozole is used mainly in women after menopause. If you have not gone through menopause and your doctor has prescribed this for you, this medication must not be used during pregnancy. It may cause harm to an unborn baby or miscarriage. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately. Women of childbearing age should use reliable form(s) of contraception (such as latex condoms) during treatment. Products containing estrogen (such as birth control pills) should not be used. Consult your doctor for more details. It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the potential risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Your healthcare professionals (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first. This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious interactions may occur: estrogens, tamoxifen. If you are currently using any of these medications listed above, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting anastrozole. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use. This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
OVERDOSE: If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US national poison hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canadian residents should call their local poison control center directly.
NOTES: Do not share this medication with others. Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., cholesterol levels, liver function tests, bone density tests) should be performed to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details. This medication may increase your risk of osteoporosis. Lifestyle changes that help promote healthy bones include increasing weight-bearing exercise, eating well-balanced meals containing adequate calcium and vitamin D, stopping smoking, and limiting alcohol. Consult your doctor to see if you need to take calcium/vitamin D supplements and/or a bisphosphonate medications (such as risedronate). Discuss lifestyle changes that might benefit you.
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store the US product at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Store the Canadian product at room temperature 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets. Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Information last revised May 2010. Copyright(c) 2010 First Databank, Inc.Other Products