Tamoxifen is a prescription medication that’s able to block out the actions of the female hormone estrogen. Certain times this is required with women when it comes to combating different forms of cancer, such as breast cancer. Breast cancer relies on the hormone in order to grow. So by blocking out what it needs in part, breast cancer can be fought better.
Tamoxifen is used to treat different forms of breast cancer in not only women, but also men. This doesn’t mean that either has to already have breast cancer. The drug can be used in advance in order to decrease the possibility of developing the condition. The reasons why this would be important are as follows:
A person can have a higher risk due to their family history-This means even if a person takes the needed steps in order to keep their risk down they could still end up developing it. Using a drug like Tamoxifen can ensure the risk stays low or is lowered.
A person might have had to fight off the condition in the past, but are not at a higher risk due to already having experienced it-In this case you might have already used this drug, but might not been aware of it. A doctor would look into your history in order to see this and if it was an effective part of your breast cancer treatment in the past it would be strongly considered again.
A person might be at an increased risk due to age-This happens sometimes and isn’t usually connected to just having a family history. As some people age they begin to experience hormone imbalances that can be problematic and this can lead to different conditions being developed. Each person’s risk would vary.
There are other uses for this medicational treatment that aren’t mentioned here, but these other uses are best left to the discretion of a qualified medical professional. What this means is some doctors will not know if there is another uses, because they have never prescribed Tamoxifen in the past. Due to this they would have very little experience and would have to rely on information from other doctors with more experience. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing, but it’s preferred to have someone with extensive knowledge of this drug and its other uses.
If you are prescribed Tamoxifen for some reason unrelated to breast cancer treatment or the controlling of the female hormone estrogen, then be sure you ask questions in order to understand why. This is important so that you feel comfortable using the drug moving forward.
What are some of the potential common side effects a user of this drug might be at risk for if they have to use it?
The above side effects are minor and should go away after the body has had a period of time to get used to the drug. If they don’t or the effects become worse, then you’ll want to let a doctor know right away so they can see what’s going on.