Breast Cancer, Metastatic or Recurrent - Medications
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 trastuzumab or lapatinib for HER2-positive cancer. Commonly used medicines include:
Hormone therapy. Medicines for hormone therapy include aromatase inhibitors, tamoxifen, antiestrogens (such as fulvestrant), or megestrol.
Targeted therapy. This may
- Monoclonal antibodies, such as ado-trastuzumab, pertuzumab, and trastuzumab.
- Tyrosine kinase inhibitors, such as lapatinib.
- PARP inhibitors, which are used to treat triple negative
Other medicines that may be used include corticosteroids for cancer that has spread to
the brain or spinal cord and bisphosphonates for cancer that has spread to the bones.
Opiate pain relievers are the most common medicines used to treat cancer pain.
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 medicines to control and prevent nausea and vomiting that you can take along with your treatments.
- Cancer: Controlling Nausea and Vomiting From Chemotherapy