Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Home remedies can work but beware side effects

Breast cancer prescription might lessen pain for those without the disease, Mayo Clinic suggests

Tamoxifen, a prescription drug used for breast cancer treatment and prevention, can also lessen breast tenderness for those without the disease.

The problem, of course, is that there are potential "side effects that may be more bothersome than the breast pain itself."

That information is part of a laundry list of pain remedies suggested by the Mayo Clinic News Network.

Home remedies on the list may be effective, the network says, despite their being little research about their efficacy.

Furthermore, a network story indicates, for "many women, breast pain solves on its own over time" so a sufferer "may not need any treatment" at all.

But methods worth trying, according to the non-bylined network article, include: putting hot and cold compresses on the tender breast; wearing a firm support bra, or a sorts bra during exercise; experimenting with relaxation therapy; limiting or cutting out caffeine; following a low-fat diet; and using over-the-counter meds such as Tylenol (acetaminophen) or Advil or Motrin (or virtually any other brand of ibuprofen).

The article also lists alternative medicines such as vitamins (Vitamin e) and dietary supplements (evening primrose oil).

Checking with your physician before attempting any of the above remedies is highly recommended — in regard to risks and whether the self-care treatments are appropriate for you, as well as for approved dosages.

According to the article, treatments by doctors might include topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, an adjustment of birth control pills, a reduction of menopausal hormone therapies, or a prescription medication (the aforementioned Tamoxifen or Danazol).

More information on treating pain and disease can be found in "Rollercoaster: How a man can survive his partner's breast cancer," a VitalityPress book that I, Woody Weingarten, aimed at male caregivers.

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