The generic name for the prescription medication Femara is Letrozole. It’s a drug that’s made to help decrease estrogen levels in women that are postmenopausal. When this happens it can decrease the growth of different forms of breast tumors that require estrogen in order to grow within the body.
Femara is used to treat breast cancer in most cases in menopausal women. It’s usually prescribed to women who have been using Tamoxifen for a period of at least 5 years. There are other uses for this medication not mentioned here, but these other uses are best left to the discretion of a medical professional.
What are some of the potential common side effects a user might be at risk for if they decide to or have to use this medicational treatment?
Dizziness, drowsiness, weakness, tired feeling
Hot flashes, warmth in your face or chest
Bone pain, muscle or joint pain
Flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling)
Swelling, weight gain
Is there any type of person that shouldn’t use this medication because it would cause additional risks for them?
Women shouldn’t use this medication if they haven’t gone through menopause completely yet. Women who are pregnant shouldn’t use the drug, because if they do then it can lead to birth defects. This doesn’t mean it would cause birth defects, but the risk increases. Women who have certain conditions also need to be extra careful. These would be women who have osteoporosis, high cholesterol problems or liver disease.
What steps do you need to take in order to be safe while on this treatment besides from being aware of the basic side effect risks?
Besides from the basic side effect risks that would be easy to notice, users need to make sure they watch out for thinking problems or reaction problems. Sometimes this can be hard to spot. The way to keep yourself safe would be to be extra careful when behind the wheel of a car or when you do anything that requires concentration.
How can you be sure if Femara is working for you the way a doctor believes it’s supposed to work?
In order to be sure that this drug is working for you properly it’s going to be important for you to get blood tests run on a consistent basis. In some cases you might also need to get your bone mineral density look at from time to time. If you use other medications be sure to let a doctor know about these as some of them can cause serious interactions.
How should this medication be used if the goal is to keep the risk of side effects in general low?
The best way to keep the risk of side effects low would be to follow the directions given to you by a doctor or the ones that come with the prescription label. It’s typically taken about once each day. It can be taken with food or without it. In order to ensure the quality of the drug you need to store it at room temperature and in low moisture/heat areas. Make sure the place you store it is somewhere that kids or pets aren’t able to get to.