- Question from Susie: What are the chances that Xeloda will work? My mom has Stage IV metastatic breast cancer, which has spread to her bones and lungs. She was in remission on Femara for 18 months and tamoxifen did not work. She started on 500 mg 2 x day Xeloda two weeks ago.
Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H.
I wish your mother weren't going through this. The drug that she is starting on, which is an oral drug as you know, is one of our most effective drugs in breast cancer.
It's hard to wait to see if the drug is working, but if she is tolerating it, she should stay on the medication for approximately three months before her doctor will redo her scans. Although, obviously, not all women have a response to this drug, we have been impressed with the number of women who do benefit.
Marisa Weiss, M.D.
If the chemotherapy worked, then it worked. It really can be that simple. Dr. Griggs and I have many patients who are able to take this chemotherapy by pill and keep things under control for an extended period of time. You don't know until you try it.
It sounds like, for your Mom, it's worth trying. Be reassured that with any treatment that you are placed on, your doctors will be there to re-evaluate all along the way to make sure that the benefits are outweighing the side effects. If the benefit isn't there, something else can be tried.
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Chemotherapy Updates featured Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about advances in chemotherapy treatment: different types of drugs and regimens, how to reduce or eliminate unpleasant side effects, and more.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in February 2002.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. 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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