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Arimidex

Generic Name: anastrozole (an AS troe zole)
Brand Names: Arimidex
Arimidex is used to treat breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Learn about side effects, interactions and indications.
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Drug Information:
Arimidex (anastrozole) lowers estrogen levels in postmenopausal women, which may slow the growth of certain types of breast tumors that need estrogen to grow in the body. Arimidex is used to treat breast cancer in postmenopausal women. It is often given to women whose cancer has progressed even after taking tamoxifen (Nolvadex, Soltamox). Arimidex may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. Do not use Arimidex if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Arimidex may not work as well if you take it together with estrogen medication (such as hormone replacement therapy, estrogen creams, or birth control pills, injections, implants, skin patches, and vaginal rings). Learn more

Arimidex Side Effects

Arimidex Side Effects

Note: This document contains side effect information about anastrozole. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Arimidex.

For the Consumer

Applies to anastrozole: oral tablet

Along with its needed effects, anastrozole (the active ingredient contained in Arimidex) may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking anastrozole:

More common

  • Blurred vision
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • nervousness
  • pounding in the ears
  • shortness of breath
  • slow or fast heartbeat
  • swelling of the feet or lower legs

Less common

  • Arm, back, or jaw pain
  • chest tightness or heaviness
  • cough or hoarseness
  • difficult or painful urination
  • dizziness, severe
  • fever or chills
  • headache, continuing
  • increased blood pressure
  • lower back or side pain
  • nausea
  • pain, tenderness, bluish color, or swelling of the foot or leg
  • sore throat
  • sudden shortness of breath
  • sweating
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vaginal bleeding (unexpected and heavy)

Incidence not known

  • Blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  • hives
  • itching, puffiness, or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  • sores, ulcers, or white spots in the mouth or on the lips
  • welts

Some side effects of anastrozole may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  • Acid or sour stomach
  • back pain
  • belching
  • body aches or pain
  • bone pain
  • congestion
  • constipation
  • decrease in height
  • diarrhea
  • dry mouth
  • dryness or soreness of the throat
  • feeling of warmth
  • fever
  • flushing or redness of the skin, especially on the face and neck
  • heartburn
  • hot flashes
  • increased appetite
  • indigestion
  • lack or loss of strength
  • loss of appetite
  • mood or mental changes
  • pain in the back, ribs, arms, or legs
  • pain, general
  • pelvic pain
  • runny nose
  • skin rash
  • stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • trouble in swallowing
  • voice changes
  • vomiting
  • weakness
  • weight loss

Less common

  • Anxiety and confusion
  • breast pain
  • chills
  • cough producing mucus
  • difficulty breathing
  • dryness of the vagina
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • itching of the skin
  • joint pain and stiffness
  • loss of hair
  • muscle pain
  • numbness or tingling of the hands or feet
  • shivering
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • trouble sleeping or sleeplessness
  • weight gain
  • wheezing

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to anastrozole: compounding powder, oral tablet

Cardiovascular

Cardiovascular side effects have included hypertension (up to 13%), edema (up to 11%), including peripheral edema (up to 9%). Ischemic cardiovascular disease (4%) has also been reported.

Musculoskeletal

Very common (10% or more): Arthritis/arthralgia/arthrosis/joint disorder/joint pain/joint stiffness (36%), back pain (12%), bone pain (12%), osteoporosis (11%), fracture (10%)

Common (1% to 10%): Myalgia, anorexia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Trigger finger

Gastrointestinal

Very common (10% or more): Nausea (20%), vomiting (11%)

Common (1% to 10%): Abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, dyspepsia, gastrointestinal disorder, dry mouth

Other

Very common (10% or more): Fatigue/asthenia (19%), pain (17%), accidental injury (10%), lymphedema (10%), peripheral edema (10%)

Common (1% to 10%): Infection, flu syndrome, cyst, fever, neck pain, malaise

Psychiatric

Very common (10% or more): Mood disturbances (19%), depression, insomnia

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (18%), depression (13%), insomnia (10%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness, anxiety, paresthesia, hypertonia, cerebrovascular event (cerebrovascular accident, cerebral ischemia, cerebral infarct), somnolence, confusion, nervousness, carpal tunnel syndrome, sensory disturbances (e.g., taste loss and taste perversion)

Dermatologic

Very common (10% or more): Rash (11%)

Common (1% to 10%): Sweating, alopecia/hair thinning, pruritus

Rare (less than 0.1%): Skin reactions (lesions, ulcers blisters), erythema multiforme, cutaneous vasculitis (including Henoch-Schonlein purpura)

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Stevens-Johnson syndrome

Respiratory

Very common (10% or more): Dyspnea (11%), increased cough (11%), pharyngitis (10%)

Common (1% to 10%): Sinusitis, bronchitis, rhinitis

Genitourinary

Common (1% to 10%): Urinary tract infection, breast pain, vulvovaginitis, vaginal hemorrhage, vaginitis, vaginal discharge, vaginal bleeding, vaginal dryness, pelvic pain, leukorrhea

Hematologic

Common (1% to 10%): Anemia, leukopenia

Hepatic

Common (1% to 10%): Increased gamma GT, increased SGOT, increased SGPT, increased alkaline phosphatase

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hepatobiliary events (e.g., increased bilirubin), hepatitis

Rare (less than 0.1%): Changes in liver function (liver inflammation, liver pain, liver swelling)

Metabolic

Common (1% to 10%): Weight gain, hypercholesterolemia, weight loss, anorexia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypercalcemia (with or without an increase in parathyroid hormone)

Hypersensitivity

Common (1% to 10%): Allergic reactions

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Urticaria

Rare (less than 0.1%): Anaphylaxis, anaphylactoid reaction

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Angioedema

Ocular

Common (1% to 10%): Cataracts

Oncologic

Common (1% to 10%): Neoplasm, tumor flare

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Endometrial cancer

Editorial References and Review

Medically reviewed by BestRx Medical Team Last updated on 1/1/2020.

Source: Drugs.com Arimidex