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Information about Arimidex (Anastrozole)

Arimidex general information

Arimidex is a first-line treatment of breast cancer in postmenopausal women. It slows the growth of advanced cancer within the breast and cancer that has spread to other parts of the body. Arimidex is also used to treat advanced breast cancer in postmenopausal women whose disease has spread to other parts of the body following treatment with tamoxifen (Nolvadex), another anticancer drug. Arimidex can also be prescribed along with other drugs to treat the early stages of breast cancer in postmenopausal women.

Arimidex combats the kind of breast cancer that thrives on estrogen. One of the hormones produced by the adrenal gland is converted to a form of estrogen by an enzyme called aromatase. Arimidex suppresses this enzyme and thereby reduces the level of estrogen circulating in the body.

Arimidex dosage and administration

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Arimidex is usually taken once per day. You may need to keep taking take this medication for up to 5 years. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Store Arimidex at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose symptoms may include stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, or blood in your stools.

Arimidex side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • swollen glands;
  • a bone fracture; or
  • swelling in your hands or feet;

Less serious side effects may include:

  • hot flashes;
  • joint pain or stiffness;
  • weakness;
  • sore throat;
  • depression, mood changes;
  • nausea; or
  • back pain, bone pain.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect.