What Is Tamoxifen And Which Are The Tamoxifen Side Effects

tamoxifen side effectsWhat Is Tamoxifen

Tamoxifen is a drug that acts as a selective estrogen receptor modulator. It’s main effect is that of an antagonist of the estrogen receptor in the breast tissue, but it also acts as an agonist in the endometrium tissue.

Tamoxifen has multiple uses, but it’s mainly recommended for the treatment, and in some cases for the prevention of early and advanced estrogen receptor positive breast cancer in post and pre-menopausal women, and for infertility. Tamoxifen is also one of the most characteristic hormone treatments prescribed for male breast cancer.

For infertility, tamoxifen is recommended especially to females with anovulatory dysfunctions. The common dosage for this matter is 10 to 40 mg of tamoxifen on a daily basis, and the administration of the drug has to be done in days 3-7 of the menstrual cycle.

Some of the other uses of tamoxifen are gynecomastia, McCune-Albright syndrome, angiogenesis and cancer, control of gene expression, and Riedel’s thyroiditis.

For gynecomastia (hyper-development of male mammary glands) this drug recommended in small doses as a preventative treatment.

In case of McCune-Albright syndrome (genetic disorder characterized through hormonal problems, abnormal skin pigmentation and bone growth) tamoxifen diminishes the rabit bone development. However, new studies have shown that various other tamoxifen side effects can show up if administered to growing young patients.

This drug is sometimes used by sex offenders for the self-induction of chemical castration.

Tamoxifen Side Effects

Although there are a few tamoxifen side effects of mild nature, the intake of this drug can show severe adverse effects.

Among the tamoxifen side effects characterized as mild are nausea, light-headedness and headaches.

Studies on patients on medication with tamoxifen have shown that this drug may induce memory impairment. Also, among the tamoxifen side effects of low impact can be considered the reduction of libido.

Here are some of the more severe side effects associated with the medication with tamoxifen.

1. Endometrial cancer. Althogh tamoxifen is an antagonist of the estrogen receptor in the breat tissue, and used for the treatment of breast cancer, chronic use of this drug may increase the risk of occurance of endometrial cancer, since it acts as an agonist in the endometrial tissue.

2. Increased blood level of triglyceride. This side effect of tamoxifen has been reported in number of subjects, especially women. And increased blood level of triglyceride may lead to heart attack, stroke or cardiovascular problems.

3. Steatosis hepatis. Otherwise known as the “fatty liver disease” this condition is usually reversible. However, due to this possible side effect, tamoxifen isn’t recommended to patients with liver problems or to patients with a history of liver disease.

4. Increased risk of premature bone fusion. Although studies haven’t shown satisfying results on this matter, due to this fact, tamoxifen is not recommended to people that haven’t completed their growth process.

One of the beneficial tamoxifen side effects is the prevention of bone loss. Since many post-menopause women also confront with osteoporosis, this adverse effect of tamoxifen is welcome. However, tamoxifen is not a medication recommended explicitly to manage and treat osteoporosis.

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