Tamoxifen is a potent estrogen receptor that serves as an adjuvant in hormone treatment for premenopausal and postmenopausal women. It also serves as an anticancer agent for both treatment and prevention of breast cancer.

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Tamoxifen is used to treat and prevent breast cancer in high risk patients, It is also used to reduce the chances of breast cancer in high-risk patients. This medication can block the growth of breast cancer by interfering with the effects of estrogen in the breast tissue. Tamoxifen is the oldest and most-prescribed selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM).

Tamoxifen is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat:

  • Women and men diagnosed with hormone-receptor-positive, early-stage breast cancer after surgery (or possibly chemotherapy and radiation) to reduce the risk of the cancer coming back (recurring).
  • Women and men diagnosed with advanced-stage or metastatic hormone-receptor-positive disease.
  • Reduce breast cancer risk in women who haven’t been diagnosed but are at higher-than-average risk for the disease.

Tamoxifen is not effective with hormone-receptor-negative breast cancer. You should not take tamoxifen if you are breastfeeding, pregnant, trying to get pregnant, or if there is any chance that you could be pregnant. Tamoxifen may cause damage to developing embryos.

Because it’s a SERM, it selectively either blocks or activates estrogen’s action on specific cells. While tamoxifen blocks estrogen’s action on breast cells, it activates estrogen’s action in bone and liver cells. It also assists postmenopausal women in:

  • Reducing bone loss after menopause.
  • Lowering cholesterol levels.

There are several medications that interfere with the effectiveness of Tamoxifen. Always check with your medical provider before introducing anything into your system.


  • Treats breast cancer.
  • Prevents breast cancer.
  • Serves as a Hormone treatment adjuvant.
  • Reduces menopause symptoms.


  • Blood clots, stroke, and endometrial cancer.
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge.
  • Pain or pressure in the pelvis, leg swelling or tenderness.
  • Chest pain, shortness of breath, weakness, tingling, or numbness in your face, arm, or leg.
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding, vision problems.
  • Dizziness, sudden severe headache.
  • Hot flashes, nausea, fatigue.
  • Mood swings, depression, headache, hair thinning.
  • Constipation, dry skin, loss of libido.