You may suffer side effects immediately after herceptin or trastuzumab injection. Notify your doctor at once when you feel nauseated, dizzy, short breaths, light headed or when you have chills, fever, headache, abrupt chest pain, dry cough, wheezing, hives or swelling of your throat, lips, tongue or face.
Effectiveness of Herceptin
Herceptin or trastuzumab is a cancer medicine that effectively inhibits the multiplication and development of cancer cells in your body.
Herceptin or trastuzumab is utilized effectively in treating some types of stomach and breast cancer. Herceptin or trastuzumab is sometimes used together with other cancer medications.
Pregnant women should not use herceptin because it can injure unborn baby. You should prevent getting pregnant for not less than 7 months from your final dosage of herceptin or trastuzumab.
Herceptin or trastuzumab may lead to heart failure mostly in people with heart problems or those taking cancer drugs. People who are allergic to herceptin or trastuzumab should never use it. To be safe with herceptin or trastuzumab, inform your doctor if you had or have:
- Heart attack
- Heart illness
- Breathing issues or allergy
- Congestive heart failure.
Herceptin may lead to heart failure mostly in people with heart problems or those taking cancer drugs like doxorubicin, idarubicin, daunorubicin or epirubicin.
Can Pregnant Women Use Herceptin?
Pregnant women should not use herceptin because it can injure unborn baby. Notify your doctor at once if you become pregnant in the course of treatment. Also utilize effective birth control methods to avoid pregnancy while receiving herceptin for not less than 7 months from your last dosage.
In case you become pregnant while on herceptin treatment or within 7 months from your final dosage, you may be required to be included in the pregnancy registry. This is to monitor the result of your pregnancy as well as assessing the effects of trastuzumab or herceptin on the baby.
It is not yet confirmed whether herceptin or trastuzumab mixes with breast milk or if it can hurt your nursing child. Do not breastfeed while suing this medicine.
How to Administer Herceptin?
Herceptin or trastuzumab is shot in the vein via an IV. You will get this injection in a hospital or clinic setting. Herceptin should be administered gradually, and the IV combination may take up to 1 hour 30 minutes to complete.
You may be required to undertake biopsy to ascertain whether herceptin is the correct drug to treat the type of your cancer.
Herceptin or trastuzumab is normally administered once in every 7 days or 21 days. Strictly follow your doctor’s advice.
You may also be required to undergo regular medical tests to check if this medicine is causing dangerous effects. Your cancer therapies can be stopped due to the outcome of the tests done.
What is the Suggested Dosage of Herceptin?
General Adult Dosage of Herceptin or Trastuzumab for treating Breast Cancer:
Herceptin or trastuzumab is used for effective treatment of metastatic breast cancer;
Give herceptin or trastuzumab alone or together with paclitaxel.
Initial Dosage: Give 4 milligrams per kg IV mixture over 3 months.
Subsequent Therapy: give 2 milligrams per kg IV blend for over 30 minutes once per week until illness succession.
Dosage of Herceptin or Trastuzumab for Treating Breast Cancer – Adjuvant:
Give as per one of the following plan and dosage.
Inject herceptin or trastuzumab through and following docetaxel, paclitaxel or docetaxel carboplatin:
Initial Herceptin Dosage: give 4 milligrams per kg IV blend more than 90 minutes, then 2 milligrams per kg IV blend more than 30 minutes per week during chemotherapy in the initial 12 weeks (docetaxel, paclitaxel) or 18 weeks (docetaxel carboplatin).
Subsequent Therapy: 7 days after the final weekly dosage of Herceptin, administer trastuzumab in 6 milligrams per kg IV blend for more Than 30 to 90 minutes every 21 days for 52 weeks treatment.
Give trastuzumab alone for 21 days after completing all chemotherapy.
Initial Dosage: Give 8 milligrams per kg IV blend for over 90minutes.
Subsequent Therapy: Give 6 milligrams per kg IV blend over 30 to 90 minutes every 21 days for 52 weeks treatment.
Adult Dosage of Herceptin or Trastuzumab for Treating Esophageal Carcinoma, Gastric Cancer:
For Treating Metastatic Gastric or Gastroesophageal Junction Adenocarcinoma:
Give herceptin or trastuzumab together with capecitabine and cisplatin or 5-fluorouracil.
Initial Dosage: Give 8 milligrams per kg IV blend over 90 minutes
Subsequent Therapy: Give 6 milligrams per kg IV blend for over 30 to 90 minutes every 21 days until illness progression.
What are the Side Effects of Herceptin?
You may suffer side effects immediately after herceptin injection. Notify your doctor at once when you feel nauseated, dizzy, short breaths, light headed or when you have chills, fever, headache, abrupt chest pain, dry cough, wheezing, hives or swelling of your throat, lips, tongue or face.
Seek immediate medical assistance if you experience any symptoms of allergic reactions to herceptin or trastuzumab: such as breathing difficulties, hives or swelling of your lips, throat, face and tongue.
Contact your doctor immediately if you have the below severe side effects of herceptin or trastuzumab:
- Bluish skin or lips
- Fast or superficial breathing, pain when breathing, panting for breath, grunting,
- Short breaths while lying down or with slight exertion,
- Rapid increase in weight, swelling,
- Throbbing heartbeats or fluttering with the chest,
- Abrupt chest discomfort or pain, new or escalating cough, wheezing,
- Signs of heart attack like nausea, pain scattering to your shoulders and jaw, chest preassure or pain, sweating,
- Signs of cold or flu, skin and painful mouth sores, painful swallowing, swollen gums, fever.
Common side effects of herceptin or trastuzumab include:
- Mouth sores,
- Fatigue, insomnia, headache,
- Weight loss, nausea diarrhea
- Pale skin, skin rash, bruising,
- Cough, fever, chills, or other infections,
- Symptoms of cold like blocked nose, sore throat, sinus pain are all the side effects of herceptin or trastuzumab,
- Changed sense of taste.