Breast Cancer Recurrence

Posted by hereigoagain @hereigoagain, Jun 8, 2017

27 years ago I had breast cancer went through mastectomy, chemo, and 5 years of tamoxifen. Eventually I was able to not think about it. When I reached the 20 year mark I thought to myself I have made it. In March of this year I was told the breast cancer that was hidden for 27 years is back in my lungs.
So the game plan is to make life comfortable for as long as we can. I have been taking anastrozole for about 2 months the side effects are more than I expected. I have muscle and bone pain almost daily with some days almost intolerable. Is this common?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Breast Cancer group.

Welcome to Connect, @hereigoagain.
That must have been a shock after 27 years with no evidence of disease to find a recurrence that had metastasized to your lungs. I’d like to introduce you to a few other ladies who know first hand what it is like to get the news of a recurrence. Please meet @rae3 @wandering @berit @saltis @marbar369 and @djankord1

HereIGoAgain, you may also be interested in joining this conversation about anastrozole. Members have shared their experience with muscle and bone pain side effects and how they manage:
– Concerned about the side effects of anastrozole

Are you noticing any side effects from the mets in your lungs? How did you discover the recurrence? We look forward to getting to know you.


Yes it was quite a shock. I’m still trying to cope with all the emotions. I was not experiencing any symptoms I had a chest x-ray when I was experiencing difficulty swallowing. It’s sometimes difficult to figure out what is side effects and what could be changes of the cancer. Currently it appears to be side effects. The pain in the bones is the most worrisome. It is nice to have a place to go to when the moments are rough.


I was diagnosed with stage 1, triple +, BC with clear lymph nodes almost two years ago. I had a lumpectomy and was scheduled to start chemo. My Dr ordered pet/ct scans basically to have as a baseline. The scans showed suspicious spots on two ribs. Biopsy confirmed mets. Chemo was cancelled and I started radiation (which originally was going to follow chemo). I chose to do intense 3-D radiation twice a day for five days, and had minimal discomfort. I started on, and am still on, Anastrozole, Herceptin (every two weeks), and Xgeva. Fortunately that regimen immediately put me into remission and has kept me there to date!

I had severe bone and muscle pain and fatigue for the first year. I attributed the side effects more to the Herceptin since the pain and fatigue were worse for a few days following the infusions. I'm sure the Anastrozole and/ or Xgeva could have contributed…? At one year the pain and fatigue virtually disappeared. Right now I'm feeling pretty good!


Hi @kayk, I saw your post in the discussion about radiation burns in the Cancer group, which got me thinking to check in. How are you doing lately?


Hi @kayk, I saw your post in the discussion about radiation burns in the Cancer group, which got me thinking to check in. How are you doing lately?

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Hi Colleen, I'm doing well. I'm still on the same treatment plan that I started two years ago: Anastrozole, Herceptin, and Xgeva — and am still in remission. I "hold my breath" until I get the results from my quarterly PET/CT scans, but so far, so good!


So sorry to hear it's back…….and after such a long time. I had a friend whose mother had a similar experience though. She was able to fight it for many, many years. Hugs and hang in there. I couldn't take any of the AI's (I had horrible side effects) but I do know that there are at least three types and some don't have the same side effects for each woman. Perhaps you can talk with your doctor and after giving this one a try, ask to switch to one of the others and see if it's more tolerable. I did find that of the three I tried the Letrozole (for me) was much easier on me.

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