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Old 05-23-2012, 11:46 AM   #1
AlaskaAngel
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Question Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

For the first time in 10 years I made my favorite omelette this morning, which I have not made since before being treated for cancer. It consists of egg (of course), small bits of sauteed green onion and mushroom made with the egg, wrapped over fresh tomato slices, fresh avocado slices, bits of bacon, and sour cream. It is something I used to make at least once a month for us, and especially enjoyed. I haven't made it in years because I am primarily vegetarian now.

I was amazed. None of it had any flavor except the bacon sort of did. With the gradual changes due to loss of estrogen, I hadn't realized just how extremely different so many things are now. I wonder if that is why I have less reaction to other things that used to be more intense and motivating!
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Dx 2002 age 51
bc for granny, aunt, cousin, sister, mother.
ER+/PR+/HER2+++, grade 3
IDC 1.9 cm, some DCIS, Stage 1, Grade 3
Lumpectomy, CAFx6 (no blood boosters), IMRT rads, 1 3/4 yr tamoxifen
Rads necrosis
BRCA 1 & 2 negative
Trials: Early detection OVCA; 2004 low-dose testosterone for bc survivors
Diet: Primarily vegetarian organic; metformin (no diabetes), vitamin D3
Exercise: 7 days a week, 1 hr/day
No trastuzumab, no taxane, no AI
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:35 PM   #2
Mtngrl
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Re: Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

Not being able to taste that fabulous omelette must have been disappointing. I'm sorry that happened.

What makes you think it's due to drops in hormones? You're exceptionally well-informed, so I trust you know what you're talking about. I'm just curious.

Things do get to be different, don't they? I don't have any answers. I just thought I'd chime in and commiserate.
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3/23/17 Lung biopsy. Tumor sampled is ER-, PR+ (5%), HER2+++. Getting Herceptin and Perjeta as a maintenance treatment.
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:48 PM   #3
AlaskaAngel
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Re: Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

I'm not sure what the cause is for it.

I know that the overall lubrication from top to bottom lessened quite obviously immediately for me upon chemopause (skin drier, hair drier, eyes drier, ear wax less, vagina drier, etc.) My thought is that the taste buds also became less able to conduct taste for the same reason, just by being drier from the loss of the estrogenic lubrication. I wondered how common it might be, or not, for others.

A.A.
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Dx 2002 age 51
bc for granny, aunt, cousin, sister, mother.
ER+/PR+/HER2+++, grade 3
IDC 1.9 cm, some DCIS, Stage 1, Grade 3
Lumpectomy, CAFx6 (no blood boosters), IMRT rads, 1 3/4 yr tamoxifen
Rads necrosis
BRCA 1 & 2 negative
Trials: Early detection OVCA; 2004 low-dose testosterone for bc survivors
Diet: Primarily vegetarian organic; metformin (no diabetes), vitamin D3
Exercise: 7 days a week, 1 hr/day
No trastuzumab, no taxane, no AI
NED
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Old 05-25-2012, 07:30 PM   #4
Jackie07
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Re: Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

Interesting observation! And the abstract below confirms it...

Arch Histol Cytol. 2007 Nov;70(4):215-24.
Immunohistochemical identification of cells expressing steroidogenic enzymes cytochrome P450scc and P450 aromatase in taste buds of rat circumvallate papillae.

Toyoshima K, Seta Y, Toyono T, Kataoka S.
Source

Division of Oral Histology and Neurobiology, Department of Biosciences, Kyushu Dental College, Kitakyushu, Japan. kuni-t@kyu-dent.ac.jp

Abstract

The present study demonstrated for the first time the localizations and patterns of expression of key enzymes for steroidogenesis, cytochrome P450 side-chain-cleavage (P450scc), and P450 aromatase in the taste buds of rat circumvallate papillae, using immunoblot analyses and immunohistochemistry. Immunoblot analyses showed that proteins with a molecular weight close to that of rat adrenal cytochrome P450scc and a molecular weight close to that of rat ovary cytochrome P450 aromatase were present in the rat circumvallate papillae. In immunohistochemistry, antibodies against cytochrome P450scc and P450 aromatase yielded the labelings of a subset of taste bud cells. In the double immunolabeling of P450scc and alpha-gustducin or phospholipase C beta2(PLCbeta2), which were considered as markers of a majority of type II cells, P450scc was co-expressed in a subset of alpha-gustducin or PLCbeta2, but did not co-express neural adhesion molecule (NCAM), a marker of major type III cells. Further double immunolabeled studies showed that P450 aromatase was co-expressed in a subset of alpha-gustducin or PLCbeta2, but did not co-express PGP9.5, a marker of a majority of type III cells. The selective localization of cytochrome P450scc and P450 aromatase strongly suggests that estrogen biosynthesis from cholesterol might occur in a subset of type II cells of the rat taste buds. Although the full significance of estrogen in the taste bud function is not yet understand, estrogen appears to be an important regulator of taste transduction, as is the case with ATP (Finger et al., 2005), which further supports the centrality of taste cells in the life of taste buds.
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Old 05-26-2012, 09:06 AM   #5
AlaskaAngel
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Red face Re: Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

Thanks Jackie07 and MtnGirl!

It is good to have more understanding of what may be involved with treatment, so that we can be better prepared and make choices more honestly, especially with treatment that has no guarantee of working on an individual basis. Especially now that adjuvant treatment is becoming so prevalent.

I still have some ability to taste, although it is pretty generally minimal. (And I certainly haven't found that it caused me to stop eating!)

A.A.
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Dx 2002 age 51
bc for granny, aunt, cousin, sister, mother.
ER+/PR+/HER2+++, grade 3
IDC 1.9 cm, some DCIS, Stage 1, Grade 3
Lumpectomy, CAFx6 (no blood boosters), IMRT rads, 1 3/4 yr tamoxifen
Rads necrosis
BRCA 1 & 2 negative
Trials: Early detection OVCA; 2004 low-dose testosterone for bc survivors
Diet: Primarily vegetarian organic; metformin (no diabetes), vitamin D3
Exercise: 7 days a week, 1 hr/day
No trastuzumab, no taxane, no AI
NED
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Old 06-01-2012, 04:19 AM   #6
rhondalea
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Re: Changes and ?maybe? loss of estrogen?

It may not be the estrogen, AA.

Since starting the metformin trial, my side effects have been pretty mild--just obvious enough to make clear to me (and to my endocrinologist) that I didn't get the placebo, but not so much that I've been inconvenienced. (Admittedly, the bloat sometimes makes it hard to get motivated, but it passes.)

One not so great effect (for me) is a loss of appetite--I had been eating at least 2100 calories/day (and maintaining my post-chemo weight), but now it's an effort to manage 1500 (and in the last two days, only 1300). I got a little worried about that--I have issues with hypoglycemia--so last night I made one of my favorite dinners--salmon and fettucine alfredo with broccoli. It should've been tasty, but I felt like I was eating cardboard. I did manage to get it all down, but only because I felt I needed the calories.

I love food. Well, I used to love food, but now everything either tastes a little off or it doesn't taste at all. I'm just guessing this is one of the reasons many lose weight while taking metformin. Most people eat pretty mindlessly, but for those who savor their food, the difference would be remarkably apparent.

With that said, estrogen does effect one's taste buds, so that too is possible. It just seems that metformin is a more likely culprit.
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