Breast Cancer, Metastatic or Recurrent
Metastatic or recurrent breast cancer is treated with a variety of medicines, including chemotherapy and hormone therapy.
Chemotherapy. Medicines may be given by themselves, or in some cases, in a combination. Medicines may also be combined with Reference trastuzumab or lapatinib for HER2-positive cancer. Commonly used medicines include:
- Reference Capecitabine.
- Reference Cyclophosphamide.
- Reference Docetaxel.
- Reference Doxorubicin.
- Reference Epirubicin.
- Reference Gemcitabine.
- Reference Paclitaxel.
- Reference Vinorelbine.
Hormone therapy. Medicines for Reference hormone therapy Opens New Window include Reference aromatase inhibitors, Reference tamoxifen, antiestrogens (such as Reference fulvestrant), or Reference megestrol.
Other medicines may be used. For example, Reference tyrosine kinase inhibitors may be given with lapatinib and capecitabine. And Reference corticosteroids or Reference bisphosphonates may be used if cancer has spread to the brain or spinal cord.
Reference Opiate pain relievers are the most common medicines used to treat Reference cancer pain. If your doctor isn't able to help you get relief from your pain, ask to see a Reference pain specialist Opens New Window. Cancer pain can be complicated and may require a doctor who has had specialized training.
Dealing with side effects of medicines
Chemotherapy can often cause nausea and vomiting. To help relieve any nausea that you may have, your doctor will prescribe Reference medicines to control and prevent nausea and vomiting that you can take along with your treatments.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference October 22, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Douglas A. Stewart, MD - Medical Oncology