pronounced as (an as’ troe zole)
Anastrozole is used to treat breast cancer in women after menopause. Some breast cancers are made to grow faster by a natural hormone called estrogen.
What is Analois (Anastrozole) used for?
- Breast Cancer
- Breast Cancer — Male
- Neoplasia — Estrogen Dependent
When anastrozole is given
Anastrozole is usually given after surgery to reduce the risk of breast cancer coming back or spreading.
If you’re having chemotherapy or radiotherapy, your specialist will tell you when it’s best to start anastrozole.
Occasionally, anastrozole may be used as the first treatment for breast cancer, for example when surgery isn’t appropriate or needs to be delayed. It’s sometimes given before surgery to shrink a large breast cancer.
Anastrozole can also be used to treat breast cancer that has come back (recurrence). It can also be given to treat breast cancer that has spread to another part of the body (secondary breast cancer), when it’s often given alongside another drug.
How long will I have to take it?
This will depend on your individual circumstances, but anastrozole is usually taken for five to ten years.
Some people start taking anastrozole after a number of years of taking the hormone therapy drug tamoxifen.
If you’re taking anastrozole to treat breast cancer that has come back or spread to another part of the body, you’ll usually take it for as long as it’s keeping the cancer under control.
If you’re taking anastrozole to reduce your risk of breast cancer developing because of your family history, you’ll usually take it for five years.
Your treatment team will tell you when to stop taking anastrozole. You won’t need to stop taking it gradually.
Some people worry about stopping their treatment, but there’s evidence that anastrozole continues to reduce the risk of breast cancer coming back for many years after you stop taking it.
However, not taking the drug for the recommended time may increase the risk of your breast cancer coming back. If you’re thinking about stopping taking anastrozole for any reason, talk to your specialist first. Sometimes it may be possible to change to another hormone drug.
Hormone therapy is a very common treatment for secondary breast cancer and many people take it for a long time. If anastrozole stops working, your specialist may prescribe another hormone drug.
How it is taken
Anastrozole is taken as a tablet once a day, with or without food. It’s best to take it at the same time every day.
If you miss a dose, you don’t need to take an extra dose the next day. The level of drug in your body will remain high enough from the day before.
Taking anastrozole with other drugs
If you’re taking any other prescribed or over-the-counter medicines, check with your treatment team or pharmacist if you can take these with anastrozole.
Do not take other drugs containing oestrogen, such as hormone replacement therapy (HRT), while you’re taking anastrozole as this may interfere with its effectiveness.
Talk to your specialist, pharmacist or GP about any complementary therapies, herbal remedies or supplements you want to use before you start using them