Taxol

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Brand name: Taxol

Chemical name: Paclitaxel

Class: Taxane chemotherapy. Abraxane and Taxotere are other taxanes.

How it works: Taxanes interfere with the ability of cancer cells to divide.

Uses: Taxol usually is given in combination with other chemotherapy medicines and is used after surgery to:

  • reduce the risk of early-stage breast cancer coming back
  • treat advanced-stage breast cancer after it stops responding to standard chemotherapy regimens that include an anthracycline

How it's given: Taxol is given intravenously.

Additional information: Taxol uses solvents to dissolve paclitaxel, the main ingredient, so the medicine can enter the bloodstream. These solvents may make Taxol difficult to tolerate while being given. People usually take pre-medications to minimize reactions to the solvents.

Side effects:

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