Re: [MOL] Tamoxifen and eye problems/REPLY! [01321] Medicine On Line

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Re: [MOL] Tamoxifen and eye problems/REPLY!

Hi Betty!  Welcome to our forum.  Please know we are not in the medical
profession; however we are all on the journey of cancer in one form or
another.  I am a breast cancer survivor, who was once on the drug Tamoxifen
and removed myself after 5 or 6 months because of the complications I was
having.  At the time I thought I was as fruity as a fruit cake, my doctor
did not believe me. Once off the drug the swelling of the meningies around
the brain went away; but I was left with pernment damage and am on
disability now.  I would suggest you ask your doctor about Arimidex as a
substitute for tamoxifen.  I am inclosing information for you to make your
decision and yes there is a section on effects to eyes.  I certainly wish
you luck on this.  Warmly, your friend, lillian

> (Excerpt From Cancer & Hormone Paper)
> Tamoxifen has been formally declared by the World Health Organization as a
> carcinogen.  Under State Proposition 65, California must publish and
> maintain a list of all known carcinogens.  In 1995, the state's Carcinogen
> Identification Committee voted unanimously to list tamoxifen.  Tamoxifen's
> known side effects include:
> Liver Damage :    Britain withdrew from studies on the use of tamoxifen
> it was discovered that tamoxifen's manufacturer withheld unpublished data
> indicating that the drug may induce liver tumors. Liver damage has
> in every animal study using tamoxifen.  Animal studies show tamoxifen
> produces potentially carcinogenic DNA and alterations in the liver, as
> as eye damage.
> Uterine Cancer :    Although the drug has had some success in preventing
> recurrences in women who have been successfully treated for breast cancer,
> it does promote particularly aggressive uterine cancer. A large Swedish
> study, and another in the Netherlands, found a 6-fold increase in uterine
> cancer among those patients who took tamoxifen.  In a University of
> Pittsburgh study, 23 out of 1,000 given the drug, contracted uterine
> Endometrial Effects :   A Danish/British study detected endometrial
> abnormalities.  Uterine tumors, endometrial thickenings, and cancers
> occurred in a significant number of women taking tamoxifen.
> Blood Clots :   It is also known to cause fatal blood clots in the lungs,
> irritating the walls of the veins, and leading to inflammation.
> Osteoporosis :   Taxmoxifen users are at risk of developing early symptoms
> of menopause, including accelerated bone mineral loss and osteoporosis.
> Other adverse reactions which are seen infrequently are hypercalcemia,
> peripheral edema, distaste for food, pruritus vulvae (vaginal itching),
> depression, dizziness, light-headedness, headache, hair thinning and/or
> partial hair loss, and vaginal dryness.
> NOLVADEX has been associated with changes in liver enzyme levels, and on
> rare occasions, a spectrum of more severe liver abnormalities including
> fatty liver, cholestasis, hepatitis and hepatic necrosis.
> Tamoxifen: A Major Medical Mistake?
>                              by Sherrill Sellman
>        Extracted from Nexus Magazine, Volume 5, #4 (June - July 1998)
>      Once praised for its benefits in preventing breast cancer
>      recurrence, the lucrative pharmaceutical drug tamoxifen is now
>      implicated in causing dangerous side-effects, including other
>      types of cancers.
>      In the early 1970's, a shameful chapter closed on the widespread
>      use of a known carcinogenic and endocrine-disrupting drug called
>      DES (diethylstilboestrol), the first synthetic, non-steroidal
>      estrogen drug. Against the advice of its creator, Sir Charles
>      Dodd, between four and six million American and European women and
>      10,000 Australian women innocently used DES for the prevention of
>      miscarriage and pregnancy complications.
>      In addition, DES became a popular though unproven drug for a
>      variety of other conditions. It was used for the suppression of
>      lactation, the treatment of acne, the treatment of certain types
>      of breast and prostatic cancer, and as an inhibitor of growth in
>      young girls, an estrogen replacement in menopause and a "morning
>      after" pill.
>      It would take 30 years to accept what laboratory tests had
>      indicated as early as 1938 - that DES was a highly dangerous and
>      harmful drug. It was reported that, 20 years after taking DES,
>      mothers had a 40 to 50 per cent greater risk of breast cancer than
>      non-exposed mothers. In addition, the children of DES mothers
>      showed a high incidence of reproductive abnormalities,
>      miscarriages, vaginal cancer, testicular cancer, sterility and
>      immune dysfunction. In fact, it is feared that repercussions of
>      this drug will be felt for generations to come.
>      The irony of this entire debacle is that the medical establishment
>      finally acknowledged that DES was useless in preventing
>      miscarriages. Thus, DES, another disastrous experiment on women,
>      was added to the long list of major medical blunders.
>      Out of this early research, a new drug appeared on the horizon
>      which would be soon be heralded as a shining star in the war
>      against the growing epidemic of breast cancer. In the late 1960's
>      the pharmaceutical industry developed a drug called "tamoxifen".
>      As a synthetic, non-steroidal compound with hormone-like effects
>      (many of which are poorly understood), tamoxifen has a similar
>      structure to DES. In fact, it was observed that tamoxifen caused
>      the same abnormal changes seen in cells of women taking estradiol
>      and DES. (1) This similarity raised alarm bells for some.
>      Pierre Blais, well known as a drug researcher who was ejected from
>      Canada's health protection bureaucracy when he spoke out about
>      silicone breast implants, describes the story of tamoxifen as "the
>      story of modern drug design which produces garbage drugs". He
>      says, "Good drug design ceased, unfortunately, in the 1930s."
>      Tamoxifen, Blais asserts, " a garbage drug that made it to
>      the top of the scrap heap. It is a DES in the making." (2)
>      Blais's dire predictions were ignored with the promise of a
>      potential drug treatment for breast cancer. Tamoxifen was first
>      approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use as a
>      birth-control pill; however, it proved to induce rather than
>      inhibit ovulation. Although tamoxifen didn't work as a
>      contraceptive, it was found to lower mammary cancer rates in
>      animals. Animal studies showed that tamoxifen prevented estrogen
>      from binding to receptor sites on breast tissue cells. Tamoxifen
>      also reduced the incidence of breast cancer in rodents after
>      administration of a breast-carcinogenic substance. This discovery
>      provided the impetus to study its effects in treating human breast
>      cancer.
>      Estrogen is the common link between most breast cancer risk
>      factors, i.e., genetic, reproductive, dietary, lifestyle and
>      environmental. It both stimulates the division of breast cells
>      (healthy as well as cancerous) and, especially in its 'bad' form,
>      increases the risk of breast cancer. Thus, hormonal drugs such as
>      tamoxifen that block the effects of estrogen on the breast were
>      expected to reduce the risk of breast cancer recurring in women
>      treated for breast cancer. (3)
>      Tamoxifen acts as a weak estrogen by competing for estrogen
>      receptors much as phyto-estrogens do. Like phyto-estrogens,
>      tamoxifen has mild estrogenic properties but is considered an
>      anti-estrogen since it inhibits the activity of regular estrogens.
>      More accurately, tamoxifen is an estrogen-blocker. It fights
>      breast cancer by competing with estrogen for space on estrogen
>      receptors in the tumor tissue. Every tamoxifen molecule that hooks
>      onto an estrogen receptor prevents an estrogen molecule from
>      linking up at the same site. Without a steady supply of estrogen,
>      cells in an estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) tumor do not thrive
>      and the tumor's ability to spread is reduced. (4)
>      However, tamoxifen exhibited two conflicting characteristics. It
>      could act either as an anti-estrogen or as an estrogen. Therefore,
>      while tamoxifen is anti-estrogenic to the breast, it also acts as
>      an estrogen to the uterus and, to a lesser extent, the heart,
>      blood vessels and bone. So, although it initially showed the
>      tendency to counter breast cancer recurrence, it would soon be
>      revealed that it also promoted particularly aggressive uterine and
>      liver cancers, caused fatal blood clots and interfered with many
>      other functions.
>      Doctors, however, were quick to jump on the tamoxifen bandwagon,
>      turning a blind eye to its more injurious tendencies. Starting in
>      the 1970's oncologists began using tamoxifen to treat women with
>      cancer, often in combination with other drugs, radiation or
>      surgery such as lumpectomy and mastectomy, with modest success.
>      Like DES, tamoxifen's benefits were then extended for use as a
>      preventive against osteoporosis and heart disease.
>      Today, doctors are treating about one million American breast
>      cancer patients with tamoxifen, about 20 per cent of them for more
>      than five years. As studies published in the New England Journal
>      of Medicine in 1989 and the Journal of the National Cancer
>      Institute in 1992 showed, women with breast cancer who took
>      tamoxifen reduced their chances of developing cancer in the other
>      breast (contralateral cancer) by about 30 to 50 per cent. (3)
>      These findings would later be challenged.
>      Tamoxifen is now recommended for all pre-menopausal women with
>      hormone-positive cancers, as well as for most postmenopausal women
>      with breast cancer and/or a growing number of women with
>      hormone-negative cancers. Tamoxifen is currently used by more
>      women with breast cancer than any other drug. (6)
>      Tamoxifen (brand name Nolvadex) is now the most widely prescribed
>      cancer medication in the world. It generated revenues of US $265
>      million in 1992. By 1995, worldwide sales of Nolvadex reached $400
>      million. (7) And at AUD $90 for one month's supply, it doesn't
>      come cheap (the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme covers
>      $70).
>      Tamoxifen was developed by UK-based Imperial Chemical Industries
>      (ICI), one of the world's largest multinational chemical
>      corporations. Zeneca, an ICI subsidiary, is responsible for
>      manufacturing and marketing the hormone and is now the world's
>      largest cancer-drug company.
>      It is no surprise that ICI's profits come from playing both sides
>      of the cancer industry. ICI's agrochemical division, which
>      includes Zeneca, manufactures chlorinated and other industrial
>      chemicals including herbicides. All are poisonous, and many are
>      known endocrine-disrupters that have been incriminated as causes
>      of breast cancer. ICI's profits swell by manufacturing chemicals
>      that on the one hand cause breast cancer, and on the other hand
>      reputedly cure breast cancer.
>                         LIMITED BENEFITS OF TAMOXIFEN
>      Tamoxifen 's benefits are determined by several factors: (8)
>         * Postmenopausal women who are ER-positive (have a positive
>           estrogen receptor status) get the most benefit.
>         * For postmenopausal women who are ER-negative, the benefits
>           appear to outweigh the risks.
>         * For pre-menopausal women who are ER-positive, it's a tough
>           call. Potential benefits are small.
>         * Pre-menopausal women who are ER negative receive virtually no
>           benefit.
>         * Tamoxifen is more effective in women who have cancer in their
>           lymph nodes than in those whose nodes are cancer-free.
>      In 1992 the Lancet published a review of a number of studies in
>      which a total of 30,000 breast cancer patients were randomly
>      assigned either to take tamoxifen or not. The average patient in
>      this collaborative study was followed up for between five and six
>      years. Of the patients taking tamoxifen, 74.4 per cent survived,
>      as compared with 70.9 per cent in the non-tamoxifen group - a less
>      than impressive improvement.
>      The report found that the group helped most consisted of
>      post-menopausal women with ER-positive status. The study went on
>      to report that pre-menopausal women who are ER-negative had
>      absolutely no benefit from taking tamoxifen. (9)
>      Despite tamoxifen's proven ability to reduce breast cancer
>      recurrence in postmenopausal women, major studies have shown that
>      tamoxifen reduces death from breast cancer only marginally. (10)
>      The majority of women who take tamoxifen live no longer than women
>      who do not take it. (11) Furthermore, some breast cancers learn
>      how to use tamoxifen to stimulate their growth.
>      The benefits of tamoxifen are limited. Virtually all women who
>      take it become resistant within five years. (12) A recent
>      randomized controlled study showed that tamoxifen reached its
>      maximum protective effect on breast tissue with women who took it
>      for five years. Taking it for five more years didn't offer any
>      more protection, and may actually have caused more cancers. In
>      other words, after a while the breast cells become resistant to
>      tamoxifen and actually start to be fed by it. (13)
>      This result surprised the researchers. According to Dr. Susan
>      Love, author of Dr. Susan Love's Hormone Book: "This is a dramatic
>      example of why you need good, long-term studies. If we had based
>      all of our recommendations on the five-year data without doing
>      further studies, we would have had women taking tamoxifen forever.
>      So convinced were we that tamoxifen was a wonder drug that the
>      only reason researchers did the later study at all was to prove it
>      wrong. Luckily, we found out that we were wrong in time to prevent
>      doing further damage. We have learned, not for the first time,
>      that more isn't always better." (l4)
>                             TAMOXIFEN'S DARK SIDE
>      While the initial findings of tamoxifen's role in breast cancer
>      treatment seemed so promising, as with so many of the synthetic
>      hormone drugs, further research presented grave concerns for its
>      widespread use. In fact, the MIMS Annual lists 25 adverse
>      reactions to tamoxifen: some of l these can be fatal.
>                              Menopausal Symptoms
>      Tamoxifen often induces menopausal symptoms in menstruating women.
>      About half of these women experience hot flushes. Fluid retention
>      and weight I gain occur in about 25 per cent of l women and can be
>      controlled by reducing the dose. Vaginal discharge and vaginal
>      atrophy are additional symptoms. Some studies have also found l
>      that pre-menopausal users are at risk of developing accelerated
>      bone-mineral loss and osteoporosis.
>      Menstrual irregularities also occur in pre-menopausal women.
>      Amenorrhea (absence of the menstrual cycle) often results and can
>      be permanent.
>                                  Eye Damage
>      According to a 1978 study in Cancer Treatment Reports and another
>      published in Cancer in 1992, about six per cent of women taking
>      even low-dose tamoxifen suffer damage to the retina and corneal
>      opacities and decreased visual acuity. Irreversible corneal and
>      retinal changes can occur in those taking 20 mg. of tamoxifen
>      twice a day (twice the usual dose). These changes may have no
>      immediate effect on visual acuity, but may predispose the eyes to
>      later problems including cataracts.
>                                  Blood Clots
>      Tamoxifen irritates the walls of the veins, and inflammation (a
>      natural healing response to irritation) follows. The constant
>      irritation and inflammation weakens the veins, causing bleeding,
>      clotting, thrombophlebitis and, in the worst cases, obstruction of
>      the blood vessels serving the lungs, which can be deadly and can
>      occur with little warning. The incidence of thrombophlebitis in
>      women using oral contraceptives is generally regarded as
>      significant (1 in 2,000); however, with tamoxifen it's 30 times
>      greater."
>      Several studies, including one reported to the FDA's Oncological
>      Drugs Advisory Committee by the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast
>      and Bowel Project in 1991, showed that the risk of developing
>      life-threatening blood clots increases about seven times in women
>      taking tamoxifen. (6)
>                            Psychological Symptoms
>      Depression has been reported as a potential side-effect of
>      tamoxifen in 30 per cent of women. Cases have been reported of an
>      inability to concentrate.
>      It is important that patients observe their moods and mental
>      states. If it is suspected at tamoxifen is causing depression or
>      lack of concentration, it is suggested that a period of tamoxifen
>      avoidance be considered.
>                                Other Symptoms
>      Tamoxifen can trigger asthma attacks in some sensitive patients.
>      Changes to the vocal cords resulting in impairment of singing and
>      speaking abilities are occasionally caused by tamoxifen.
>                            CARCINOGENENIC EFFECTS
>      It wasn't long before laboratory studies showed that tamoxifen
>      acted as a carcinogen. It has been found that tamoxifen binds
>      tightly and irreversibly to DNA, the genetic blueprint of a cell,
>      causing a cancerous mutation to take place. Even Australia's
>      conservative National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
>      warned that no amount of tamoxifen is safe when it comes to
>      carcinogenic effects.
>      In California there is a law called "Proposition 65" that requires
>      the state to publish and maintain a list of all known carcinogens.
>      In May 1995, the state's Carcinogen Identification Committee voted
>      unanimously to add tamoxifen to its list.
>      Following suit, in 1996 the World Health Organization formally
>      designated tamoxifen a human carcinogen, grouping it with 70 other
>      chemicals - about one quarter of them pharmaceuticals - that have
>      received this dubious distinction.
>                        Liver Cancer and Liver Disease
>      Tamoxifen is toxic to the liver, and there have been reports of
>      acute hepatitis in patients treated with tamoxifen. Liver damage
>      has occurred in every animal given tamoxifen. According to Gary
>      Williams, medical director of the American Heart Foundation,
>      tamoxifen has been shown in animal studies to be a "rip-roaring"
>      liver carcinogen, inducing highly aggressive cancers in about 12
>      per cent of rats. (7)
>      The latest human studies show a six-fold increase in liver cancer
>      among women taking tamoxifen for more than two years." Liver
>      failure and tamoxifen-induced hepatitis, although rare, have been
>      reported. Even Zeneca admits that tamoxifen is a liver carcinogen
>      - while nevertheless aggressively promoting its use.
>                                                 Uterine (Endometrial)
> Cancer
>      As early as 1967, ICI scientists noted that "tamoxifen persists
>      for some days in the uterus". In rats, a tamoxifen metabolite (a
>      breakdown compound almost similar in structure to the original)
>      was found to influence the uterus to be more receptive to
>      estrogen. (The more estrogen, the greater the chance of unnatural
>      cell-division leading to cancer.) ICI also reported liver
>      carcino-genicity of tamoxifen as well as both ovarian and
>      testicular tumors in mice in its description of the drug in the
>      standard Physicians Desk Reference.
>      Uterine growths such as polyps, tumors, endometrial thickenings
>      and cancers occur in a significant number of women taking
>      tamoxifen. One study detected abnormal endometrial cells in
>      subjects the day after the first tablet was taken. (9)
>      Pre-cancerous uterine and endometrial changes were seen in 10 per
>      cent of the women taking tamoxifen in a recent study. The higher
>      the dose of tamoxifen and the longer it is taken, the greater the
>      risk of changes. Women taking the standard dose of 20 mg. for two
>      years run a risk of uterine cancer that is 2 to 3 times greater
>      than normal. After five years, the risk is 6 to 8 times greater.
>      (20)
>      In February 1996 a review by the International Agency for Research
>      on Cancer, composed of scientists from various countries,
>      definitively concluded that "there is sufficient evidence to
>      regard tamoxifen as a human carcinogen that increases a woman's
>      risk of developing cancer of the endometrium, the inner lining of
>      the uterus" (21)
>      A large Swedish study linking tamoxifen to uterine cancer forced
>      Zeneca to send letters in April 1994 to 380,000 physicians across
>      the USA, in defense of the drug. The Swedish researchers had
>      studied 1,371 breast cancer patients who took 40 mg. per day for
>      two to five years and found that there was a six-fold increase in
>      uterine cancer among those patients who took tamoxifen when
>      compared to 1,327 who did not. A second study involving patients
>      who took 20 mg. per day (the recommended dose) also showed a
>      marked increase in uterine cancers compared with the control
>      group. (22)
>      When the news came out that breast cancer patients who took
>      tamoxifen for five years or longer (the same regimen that seems to
>      prevent recurrence) might have tripled their risk of uterine
>      cancer, British cancer researcher Richard Peto, head of the cancer
>      research unit at Oxford University, sought to dismiss it. If
>      caught early, he said, endometrial cancer seldom kills, so "it's
>      no big deal". That statement infuriated critics who noted that the
>      treatment for uterine cancer is hysterectomy. Dr. Adriane
>      Fugh-Berman, a leading women's health activist, angrily responded:
>      "To some of us, it is a big deal to lose your uterus."
>      Shortly after Peto's flip dismissal of uterine cancers,
>      researchers at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center at Houston and at
>      Yale University School of Medicine discovered that breast cancer
>      patients who develop uterine cancer while using tamoxifen are
>      likely to have a fast-moving, lethal form of the disease. (23)
>      It should be noted that tamoxifen has also been associated with
>      gastrointestinal cancers.
>                                 Breast Cancer
>      The premise for taking tamoxifen is its supposed role in
>      protecting breast cancer patients from recurrence of the cancer.
>      It was further postulated that it prevented breast cancer from
>      occurring in the opposite breast (contralateral).
>      However, disturbing findings continue to surface, challenging
>      tamoxifen's effectiveness. In 1992 the New England Journal of
>      Medicine showed that tamoxifen may reduce the incidence of
>      contralateral cancer, but this was demonstrated only in
>      pre-menopausal women and only in three out of eight trials. In
>      another 1992 study, reported in Octa Oncologica, it was shown that
>      tamoxifen not only failed to reduce contralateral cancers in
>      pre-menopausal women, but it actually increased their incidence.
>      (24)
>      The irony of tamoxifen is that, while widely publicized as the
>      leading treatment against the recurrence of breast cancer, it is a
>      known and listed carcinogenic substance.
>                        Heart Disease and Osteoporosis
>      Another promise of tamoxifen was its supposed protective benefits
>      for the heart and bones. It was theorized that its estrogenic
>      properties would help reduce heart disease and osteoporosis in
>      women, but once again the theory crumbled under the weight of hard
>      facts.
>      Several trials with tamoxifen failed to show that it has any
>      effect on bone density and thus on prevention of osteoporosis. In
>      three other trials, bone density increased slightly in lower
>      spinal vertebrae but not in longer bones or hip bones which are
>      particularly susceptible to fractures and potentially fatal
>      complications.
>      Initial data seemed to indicate that it decreased the incidence of
>      heart attacks, but they have been disproved by more recent
>      studies. According to Dr. Susan Love: "It doesn't seem to have a
>      bad effect on lipids, but that's a far cry from preventing heart
>      attacks."
>      A detailed review of the drug's alleged protective cardiovascular
>      effects prompted the British National Heart, Lung and Blood
>      Institute, a once strong proponent of tamoxifen, to withdraw its
>      support because the evidence of benefit proved so inadequate. (25)
>      According to the January 1996 issue of The Network News, it was
>      reported at a closed-door meeting of the National Cancer Institute
>      that tamoxifen failed to prevent heart disease in breast cancer
>      patients.
>      Based far more on wishful thinking than on science, the U.S.
>      National Cancer Institute (NCI) leaped to the conclusion that
>      tamoxifen's anti-estrogenic effects in relation to breast cancer
>      treatment meant that the drug would prevent breast cancer from
>      developing in healthy women.
>      Disregarding all the research implicating tamoxifen with serious
>      and potentially fatal side-effects, the NCI launched a US$60
>      million breast cancer prevention trial in April 1992, aiming to
>      recruit 16,000 healthy women in the United States, Europe, Canada,
>      Australia and New Zealand. Still ongoing, the trial now involves
>      13,000 healthy women over the age of 35 who are considered at high
>      risk. Australia has recruited 1,350 women, with a target of 2,500.
>      For five years, half the women receive tamoxifen and half receive
>      a placebo. The drug is supplied free of charge by manufacturer
>      Zeneca.
>      Dr. Samuel Epstein, Professor Environmental Medicine at the
>      University of Illinois School of Public Health and author of The
>      Breast Cancer Prevention Program, raises serious concerns.
>      "Unfortunately, this misguided and dangerous approach to
>      prevention stems from the entrenched fixation of the NCI on the
>      use of chemical drugs to prevent cancer which may have been
>      induced by chemical pollutants, medical technology (such as
>      radiation from X-rays) and carcinogenic/estrogenic drugs in the
>      first place. Instead of attempting to reduce the carcinogenic
>      chemical burden under which we struggle to maintain our health,
>      the NCI believes that the solution is to add more chemicals to the
>      mix."
>      Dr. Susan Love concurs: "It is a sad state of affairs when we have
>      to add yet more chemicals to counteract the effects of other
>      chemicals."
>      This attitude extends to the way the NCI treats the women in the
>      trial. They are given no guidance on alternative protective
>      measures such as increasing exercise, maintaining a healthy
>      weight, eating a protective diet and avoiding exposure to
>      environmental carcinogens; nor are they being fully informed about
>      the serious risks of tamoxifen.
>      Dr. Lynette Dumble, Senior Research Fellow in History and
>      Philosophy of Science at the University of Melbourne, believes
>      that the global trial to prevent breast cancer with tamoxifen is a
>      modern and very large chapter of "medical imperialism". Back in
>      October 1994 she commented on ABC TV's Quantum science program
>      that the tamoxifen trial was the medical equivalent of mutilating
>      surgery which prevents a woman from developing breast cancer by
>      cutting off both her breasts.
>      Dr. Dumble sees women as vulnerable guinea pigs for the trial, and
>      questions both the breast cancer risk of healthy women
>      volunteering for the trial (how can you tell whether fate or
>      tamoxifen prevents a woman from developing breast cancer?) and the
>      terms of the trial's positives and negatives (if a woman dies of
>      tamoxifen-related endometrial or liver cancer, does this count as
>      a tamoxifen success in preventing breast cancer?).
>      It seems absurd, but why would the powers-that-be continue to
>      promote a trial that promises to substitute one cancer for another
>      in otherwise healthy women? Once again, healthy women are targeted
>      as the guinea pigs for a drug treatment that has already been
>      proven to be a cause of a variety of cancers including breast
>      cancer. In the case of tamoxifen, medical research has once again
>      taken a back seat to profits. It is the population that is at
>      risk. The cancer establishment would certainly be eager to prove a
>      tamoxifen-prevention role, since it would then open up another
>      huge, billion-dollar market.
>                           ALTERNATIVES TO TAMOXIFEN
>      While the cancer establishment continues to invest vast amounts of
>      money into research, manufacturing and trialling of harmful drugs
>      for the prevention and hopeful cure of breast cancer, there are
>      safer and more effective options that already exist.
>      Estriol, one of the estrogens produced by the ovaries, is
>      considered a safe estrogen in that it has been shown to inhibit
>      breast cancer. Dr. Henry Lemon and his colleagues conducted a
>      study in women who already had breast cancer that had spread to
>      other areas of the body. One group was given Estriol and another
>      not. At the end of the study, 37 per cent of those women who
>      received estriol had either a remission or an arrest of their
>      cancer. Might not estriol, a natural, safe hormone with almost no
>      side-effects, be able to accomplish what tamoxifen does but
>      without the toxic side-effects?
>      There is also convincing evidence that natural progesterone has an
>      important role in breast cancer treatment and prevention. A study
>      conducted in 1981 at Johns Hopkins University revealed that when a
>      group with a low progesterone level was compared with a
>      normal-level progesterone group, it was found that the occurrence
>      of breast cancer was 5.4 times greater in the women in the low
>      progesterone group. That is, the incidence of breast cancer in the
>      low progesterone group was over 80 per cent greater than in the
>      normal progesterone group. When the researchers looked at the low
>      progesterone group for all types of cancer, they found that these
>      women experienced a tenfold increase in all malignant cancers,
>      compared to the normal group.
>      In a 1995 study published in the Journal of Fertility and
>      Sterility, researchers found that women using a topical
>      progesterone cream had dramatically reduced breast cell
>      multiplication rates compared to women using either a placebo or
>      estrogen. This exciting study demonstrated that natural
>      progesterone creams impressively decreased breast cell
>      proliferation rates. (27)
>      Lifestyle factors also play a significant role. In a prospective
>      study of 25,624 Norwegian women aged 20 to 54, after an average of
>      14 years of follow-up the investigators found strong evidence that
>      everyday exercise, both at work and at leisure, reduced the breast
>      cancer risk. Women who exercised at least four hours a week during
>      leisure time were found to have a 37 per cent reduction in risk of
>      breast cancer, compared with sedentary women. The study found that
>      the more time spent exercising, the lower the breast cancer risk.
>      (28)
>      As Dr. John Lee pointed out in his best-selling book, What Doctors
>      May Not Tell You About Menopause: "Herbs and food contain
>      phyto-estrogens. Their benefit parallels that of tamoxifen
>      (without the adverse side-effects) in that phyto-estrogens occupy
>      estrogen receptors and are less estrogenic than those made by the
>      body. Since it is now known that reducing caloric intake reduces
>      estrogen levels, and recent studies find 46 per cent less breast
>      cancer among women consuming more fruit and vegetables, it would
>      seem that women interested in preventing breast cancer could make
>      modest changes in diet and derive better and certainly safer
>      results." (29)
>      History continues to repeat itself. Time and time again women have
>      been reassured that the wonder drugs or treatments offered them
>      would be their salvation, only to discover they were exposed to
>      harmful carcinogenic and mutagenic chemicals.
>      In addition to the DES debacle, the disasters of thalidomide,
>      silicone breast implants, estrogen replacement therapy and now
>      tamoxifen (to name just a few) continue to demonstrate how readily
>      women's lives have been sacrificed in the pursuit of profits. The
>      warnings have been drowned out by the glossy advertising campaigns
>      and the reassurances of "medical experts".
>      There are solutions to the breast cancer epidemic. However, they
>      will be found more by altering lifestyle, dietary and stress
>      factors, and reducing or eliminating exposure to the many known
>      toxic, carcinogenic chemicals that are polluting the environment,
>      than by some miraculous drug discovery. It is also up to women not
>      only to continue to become fully educated about safe health
>      options but to demand them from health providers. Too many women
>      have already been maimed and sacrificed to unproven and unsafe
>      drug treatments.
>      It is widely believed that today's drugs are tomorrow's poisons.
>      In the case of tamoxifen, tomorrow has already arrived.
> file://

We invite you to take a look at our Album.

  ( Very informational, good tips, Molers pictures, art work and much

----- Original Message -----
From: <Betycal@AOL.COM>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, May 31, 2000 1:20 PM
Subject: [MOL] Tamoxifen and eye problems

> I have been on Tamoxifen for 3 years and continue to have floaters.  Most
> the time, it appears that I am looking through cob webs.  I have been to
> opthamologist and he says that he can see the floaters but I don't seem to
> have complications that come from Tamoxifen.  I believe that the floaters
> complications from the Tamoxifen.  My question is:  Will these go away
when I
> stop taking Tamoxifen in two years?
> Thank you for your response.
> Betty Wilson
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