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Tamoxifen

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Notes
Related terms
Uses
Dosing
Safety
Author information

Notes

    Related terms
    • Brand Names: Canada: Apo-Tamox®;Mylan-Tamoxifen;Nolvadex®-D;PMS-Tamoxifen;Teva-Tamoxifen
    • Mexican Brand Names: Nolvadex;Tecnofen
    • Pharmacologic Category: Antineoplastic Agent, Estrogen Receptor Antagonist;Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulator (SERM)

    Uses
    • It is used to lower the chance of breast cancer in women with a higher chance of getting it. It may lower the chance of getting cancer in the other breast after one has cancer.
    • It is used to treat breast cancer.
    • It is used to cause egg release (ovulation).
    • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.
    • Tamoxifen stops estrogen from feeding estrogen-dependent cancer cells. This lowers the chance for spread of the cancer.
    • It helps start egg release (ovulation).

    Dosing

    How to take

    • Take with or without food. Take with food if it causes an upset stomach.

    Missed Dose

    • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
    • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
    • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
    • Do not change the dose or stop this drug. Talk with the doctor.

    Storage

    • Store at room temperature.
    • Protect from light.
    • Protect from water. Do not store in a bathroom or kitchen.
    • Throw away any part of the solution 3 months not used after opening.

    Safety



    Warnings

    • This drug may raise the chance of a stroke, blood clots, and uterine cancer. Talk with your doctor.
    • Unsafe side effects may happen. This drug cannot be taken while you are taking some other drugs. Check all the drugs you are taking with your doctor.
    • Please read the medication guide.

    Avoid

    • If you have an allergy to tamoxifen or any other part of this drug.
    • Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs. Make sure to tell about the allergy and what signs you had. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
    • If you have blood clots or have had blood clots in the past.
    • If you are pregnant or may be pregnant.
    • If you are breast-feeding.

    Precautions

    • There may be a higher chance of endometrial or uterine cancer.
    • If you have any blood flow problems, talk with your doctor.
    • Have a bone density test. Talk with your doctor.
    • Check all drugs you are taking with your doctor. This drug may not mix well with some other drugs.
    • Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.
    • Limit your drinking of wine, beer, or mixed drinks.
    • Periodic breast (monthly self-exam) and regular breast and gynecologic exams are major.
    • Use birth control that you can trust to stop pregnancy while taking this drug.

    Side Effects

    • Flushing. Wearing layers of clothes or summer clothes and staying in cool places may help.
    • Upset stomach or throwing up. Many small meals, good mouth care, sucking hard, sugar-free candy, or chewing sugar-free gum may help.
    • Change in sex ability. This most often goes back to normal.
    • For women, vaginal yeast infection. Report itching or discharge.
    • High blood pressure.
    • Mood changes.
    • Weight loss.
    • Feeling tired or weak.
    • Sore throat.
    • Uterine cancer may rarely happen.
    • Stroke and blood clots may rarely happen.

    Contact a healthcare provider

    • If you think there was an overdose, call your local poison control center or ER right away.
    • Signs of a very bad reaction to the drug. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
    • Chest pain or pressure.
    • Trouble breathing.
    • Swelling or pain in the leg or arm.
    • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
    • Very bad belly pain.
    • Very loose stools.
    • For women, period changes. These include lots of bleeding, spotting, or bleeding between cycles.
    • Weakness, numbness, or tingling.
    • Change in strength on 1 side is greater than the other, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, or blurred eyesight.
    • Sudden change in eyesight.
    • Dark urine or yellow skin or eyes.
    • Not able to eat.
    • Any rash.
    • Health problem is not better or you are feeling worse.

    General Statements

    • If you have a very bad allergy, wear an allergy ID at all times.
    • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
    • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
    • Most drugs may be thrown away in household trash after mixing with coffee grounds or kitty litter and sealing in a plastic bag.
    • In Canada, take any unused drugs to the pharmacy. Also, visit http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/iyh-vsv/med/disposal-defaire-eng.php#th to learn about the right way to get rid of unused drugs.
    • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
    • Call your doctor for help with any side effects. If in the U.S., you may also call the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or if in Canada, you may also call Health Canada's Vigilance Program at 1-866-234-2345.
    • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including OTC, natural products, or vitamins.

    Author information
    • Copyright © 1978-2010 Lexi-Comp Inc. All rights reserved.

    Copyright © 2011 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)


    The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.

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