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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Thanks for bumping this Tors. Quite interesting reading, have a good idea what to expect or not expect now.

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Hi,
I was diagnosed jUNE 2nd 2009 aged 36,started chemo 25th June.I had 4 x FEC and then 4 x Taxotere and i still havent started my periods.My periods before were regular as clockwork. i get the symptoms every now and then of period pains and sudden low mood but no period. When i dont have period pains i have menopause symptoms of hot flushes and night sweats!
Not sure if they will ever start again but i live in hope as i have no children ;-(
Oh and i am triple negative so no hormone treatment.
mandy x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Bumping for clare

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Bumping for Youngcancer xxx

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

I finished my chemo last January. After the first chemo I became pregnant. I did abort and continue ny treatment. During chemo my perids have been stoped. They come back with tamoxifen and zoladex.I am 8 months on zoladex and tamoxifen, but periods still are with me. What I can to say in our situation the best is to stop with periods at all. If we wanted to live longer with out recurrence. But every women wants to be mother and it is so hard for young womens...to decide between...

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

1. How old you were at dx?
35

2. Were your periods regular or not before?
Regular, every 28 days like clockwork!

3. What chemo you had, if any?
6 cycles FEC-T (3 of each, 3 weeks apart)

4. If/when your periods stopped?
First chemo as I was injected with Zoladex first to shut down my ovaries in the hope of protecting them from the chemo.

5. If you had hormone therapy and/or the injections to keep your periods away?
Not applicable - triple negative

6. If/ when your periods came back, and if they are regular now?
They came back 6 months after chemo and are approximately every 21 days but getting closer together sometimes which I'm not a fan of!

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

You must be very surprised Tina - understand why that could rattle you. I've been period free since 2nd chemo - at 48 now and don't expect them back - maybe the couple of years between us makes all the difference. I do remember one conversation with my oncologist who said he didn't expect them to come back but he wouldn't be the slightest bit concerned if they did.

Lynn
x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Thanks Elinda! I am sure it's ok, just didn't expect it to kick back in after such an absence! Best Wishes to you.x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

HI Tina, my understanding is that tamoxifen has no effect on ovulation or periods. I don't think its an indicator at all it isn't working. My Onc, surgeon and GP are all well aware I'm ovulating (seen via blood tests as I've had a hysterectomy). ER+ 8/8, PR+ 8/8

What it does mean is that tamoxifen is the right drug for you as opposed to an aromatase inhibitor which is only for postmenopausal women.

Elinda x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Hi Elinda, yes, same age as you at dx jan2010 (lobular as well) and onc said 50/50 chance periods would return. I thought that with chemo+tamoxifen they would have ceased permanently. Worried now that tamoxifen may not be working..... ER+ 4/8

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Tina, in women who were premenopausal before starting treatment, chemo can put you just into a temporary menopause.
I was 45 when I started treatment and I was told that I would be put into permanent menopause becuase of my age. I wasn't. I started ovulating again 18 months later.

Presumably you are now on tamoxifen if you had an ER+ cancer? Elinda x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Extremely shocked to find that I have regular cycles again after they had stopped half way through chemo in June 2010. What is going on??

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Bumping up for friend x

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Oh, as an update, my periods seem to have taken a permanent leave of absence. Am now 14 months after chemo finished.

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Bumping up for sandytoes

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Yes, following chemo my periods did return becoming quite regular after some months all over the place and despite hormone treatment - I was only 40 and had had very regular periods up till then - but for me it was maybe not a good sign as I then had a recurrence - and now they have been stopped completely by a mixture of zoladex injections and letrazole tablets. Feel that's a bit grim to post - sorry!
My take though was fairly positive - glad that they did return and the gunk from the time of chemo wasn't sat in there but had flowed out... I thought it was my body doing its best to re-balance itself. Unfortunately in my case I wasn't able to find a happy medium with oestrogene but that's very individual.
I'd recommend seeing a Maya Abdominal therapist (arvigotheray.com) for these sorts of things - they specialise in massage for wombs/abdomens and are very caring and holistic... which makes for a good change after treatment full stop.

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Thanks Jane, that's really interesting. My onc did say that some form of ovarian ablation was always considered the norm on er+ bc, but that lately the view had swung the other way, in as much as they now thought it didn't make much difference. However, she remains open minded on it, and made it clear that she was open to discussion about the options available - as before I'd even had chemo I'd said that I didn't want my periods to return - I'm lucky in that my family is complete (4 kids, it's actually kind of over complete!!), and I wasn't keen on the idea of continuing to pump out oestregen for the forseeable future - as I'm 42, so it could be a few years yet.

I don't actually have another onc. appointment until next July (!) - and won't see my consultant til January, but think I might just give the bcn a call - it could be that my gp could step in here.

It's one of those occasions where you realise how individualised treatment plans are, depending not only on your personal dx, but on your oncologist's personal view.. which is a little daunting sometimes! Hey ho, at least bc has taught me that life is too short to take prisoners... shy, retiring, moi? Nope, not any longer.. off to battle I go...oh damn. Bank holiday weekend... isn't that always the way!!!!

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Hi Triphazard

After my periods returned on tamoxifen, my onc said if I wanted to do everything I could to help prevent recurrence, I should go onto Zoladex (shuts down ovaries and can be taken for 2 years) and consider ovary removal in the long term.

I'm almost due my second injection. The last month has been difficult as I've been hormonally all over the place with two migranes and various headaches, but I'm really happy to be taking it. I have had one period since I started, but that's because my cycle was already halfway through with the first injection. I do feel a sense of protection - not only are my oestrogen levels now greatly reduced by the Zoladex, but any left over should be kept away from the cancer cells by Tamoxifen. I'd recommend giving it a go. If you don't like the first month, you don't have to go back for more.

Jane

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Mine returned with a vengeance only a couple of months after finishing chemo - gutted! The first was appalling, but they have resumed normal service now, no different to before. I am 8/8 er+, so on tamoxifen, and I had a long chat with my onc about what to do if they should return. Interestingly, a lot of us believe that tamoxifen stops the body producing oestregen, hence the menopause, but it doesn't actually 'stop' it - it just prevents the oestregen binding to cells - so stopping periods is not actually a cert. My onc reckoned that if your periods stopped during chemo, that was a 'good thing'.. but had warned me all along that they may well return, and whether or not they disappeared again was a bit 'lap of the gods'.

She did also say that if I found it very distressing, then there were steps that could be taken to stop them - injections, or ultimately, having my ovaries removed. At the moment, though, I've had enough of hospitals, so I shall just persevere. If they'd stayed as heavy as the first one though.. that would be a different matter.. I'd have camped outside her office until she sorted me out!

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Re: Periods after chemo? Did they return and when?

Good luck with the radiotherapy Jo.

I mentioned my returning period to my GP, she wasn't overly concerned but is referring me for a pelvic ultrasound just to make sure everything looks okay. Anyone else had one of these?