Trastuzumab is a cancer medication that interferes with the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body. Trastuzumab is used to treat certain types of breast cancer or stomach cancer. Other cancer medicines are sometimes used in combination with trastuzumab.
Also known as: Herceptin
Availability: Only with a presciption
Problems from herceptin seemed minimal: possibly the cause of persistent diarrhoea (manageable, could also be due to concurrent anastrozole), flaking nails likely to be have been due to prior chemotherapy with taxol as the horizontal lines visible across the nail bed after each course of chemo took 7 or 8 months to grow out and the residual nail fragility whilst still on perception doesn't seem so bad. As the benefit to Her2 positive patients is so clear cut, I strongly recommend this medicine to those for whom it is appropriate. It doesn't go on forever!
I had this drug injected every 3 weeks for a year. Side effects while having it were few - runny nose and mottled skin on lower legs. I had my last injection in June. Since then my fingers and toes nails have got worse - discolouration, splitting and lifting. I have had a mammogram and all is clear. So all is good so far!
I was given this by infusion every 3 weeks for a year . My side effects were tolerable but got worse in the last few months, namely bad cough caused by drip from sinuses, also drop in heart function, discoloured breaking nails. After the year I had a Ct scan, and it was found that the cancer had returned in my lymph nodes and breast area. It is not known exactly when it stopped working, but may have held it back for several months from starting to grow.
This is a cancer drug which is injected once every three weeks. If I haven't died in the next ten to fifteen years I assume that it, along with the others, was effective.