Suggestions for getting rid of hot flashes?

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Question from Michelle: I was operated on 2 weeks ago for breast cancer and find it very difficult to get a good night's sleep, let alone deal with all the flashes during the day. What do you suggest to get rid of flashes besides soy milk? I am 70.
Answers - Anne McTiernan, M.D., Ph.D. As we mentioned before, many women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer may be suffering from menopausal symptoms, either from stopping hormone therapy or from taking medication—often tamoxifen. Since breast cancer patients are usually advised to avoid hormone therapy for menopause symptoms, they need to rely on other means.

There are some medications that you can try, so first talk with your doctor. But there are other things many women have used through the ages— like wearing layered clothing, not being afraid to open a window, avoiding hot or spicy food, and avoiding alcohol. Remember that hot flash triggers vary from woman to woman, so each woman can figure out what triggers flashes for her, and try to avoid those things.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Taking Care of Yourself featured Anne McTiernan, M.D., Ph.D. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about exercise and nutrition, and other things you can do to nurture your body, along with strategies for finding emotional support, boosting your mood, and feeling good again.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in May 2003.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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