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FemaraGeneric name: Letrozole
Trade name: Femara
Letrozole is also called Femara. It is a type of hormone therapy drug called an aromatase inhibitor, and is used to treat breast cancer
Many breast cancers are stimulated to grow by the female sex hormones oestrogen and progesterone. These breast cancers are called ‘hormone sensitive’ or ‘hormone receptor positive’ and can be treated with drugs that block the effects of these hormones.
Although women who have had their menopause don’t produce oestrogen from their ovaries, they still produce a small amount by turning other sex hormones (androgens) into oestrogen. Androgens are made by your adrenal glands, the small glands above your kidneys. Androgens need an enzyme called aromatase to turn them into oestrogen. This change happens mainly in fatty tissue, muscle and the skin. Aromatase inhibitors stop or ‘inhibit’ aromatase, so it can’t change the androgen into oestrogen. These drugs are only suitable for women who've had their menopause.
You take letrozole as a tablet, once a day.
There is general information about hormone therapies in the cancer treatment section.
We've listed the side effects associated with letrozole below. You can use the links to find out more about each side effect. Where there is no link, please click on search at the top of the page.
Common side effects
Many women will have one or more of the following side effects
Occasional side effects
Important points to remember
The side effects above may be mild or more severe. A side effect may get better or worse through your course of treatment, or more side effects may develop as the course goes on. This depends on
Some side effects are inconvenient or upsetting but not damaging to your health.
Some side effects are serious medical conditions and need treating. Where we have urged you to contact your doctor, this is because
Tell your doctor about any other medicines you are taking, including vitamins, herbal supplements and other over the counter remedies - some drugs can react together.Talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse about all your side effects so that they can help you manage them. You should have a contact number for your chemotherapy nurse, clinic or ward nurse. You can ring if you have any questions or problems. They can give you advice or reassure you. If in doubt, call them.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 21 January 2010 09:25|