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TamoxifenI bet you thought that one packet of Tamoxifen was much the same as the next.  So did I, and it seems a reasonable assumption.

However, I was at a pamper day laid on by the hospital for breast cancer patients when I overheard two women talking about the side effects of Tamoxifen.

The basic idea is that different brands of Tamoxifen might suit different people.  New one on me I must say.

This means that if you are taking Tamoxifen and are suffering from what I will call the more immediate side effects such as nausea and lady parts that feel like a couple of bits of sandpaper scraping together in your thong, that you might be better off on another brand.

If you’re getting on fine with the Tamoxifen you’re taking right now, then you may find this information useful in case your chemist decides to change supplier.

When I first heard this I thought it sounded like a pile of old hooey, but I get on fine with my Tamoxifen and so when the box changed colour I was mildly concerned, but expected the pharmacist to poo poo my worries.  However, she didn’t, and not only did she agree that women can react differently to the various brands, it seems to be well known amongst pharmacists.  Why do you think the doctors don’t say anything about it when patients are struggling with the side effects?

My local pharmacist (in the Hoo St Werburgh Chemist on Main Road in case you’re close by) was very helpful and went on to explain that the supply companies will try for the most cost effective drug, or the ones which are simply in stock.  If you need a particular brand, or want to try a new brand, then just ask and it can be sorted on a special order.  If they won’t do it then change pharmacists.

I have taken two brands of Tamoxifen and haven’t suffered nausea with either and they are made by Wockhardt UK Limited and MA Holder APS Limited.

Oh and for those of you fed up with a sandpaper fanny, this lovely pharmacist also recommended a product called SYLK.  You can buy it at boots and Superdrug for about £10 (bit cheaper on Amazon) and even get it on prescription from your GP if you ask real nice, and it’s all natural ingredients extracted from Kiwi fruits.  Give it a go.