Capecitabine-Based Combination Therapy for Breast Cancer: Implications for Nurses

Debra K. Frye

ONF 2009, 36(1), 105-113. DOI: 10.1188/09.ONF.105-113

Purpose/Objectives: To review available data and implications for nurses of combination regimens containing capecitabine for metastatic breast cancer.

Data Sources: Peer-reviewed publications or abstracts from major oncology conferences and reviews of capecitabine focusing on nursing implications.

Data Synthesis: Capecitabine has proven efficacy in combination with docetaxel and is under evaluation in the neoadjuvant, adjuvant, and metastatic settings in combination with several oral and IV chemotherapeutic and biologic agents.

Conclusions: Capecitabine-containing regimens demonstrate high activity in a range of settings but typically have more complex safety profiles, dose-modification schemes, and scheduling requirements than monotherapy.

Implications for Nursing: Patients need to be aware of a wider range of likely side effects and should understand that they have been prescribed combination therapy rather than more simple, single-agent treatments because of its potential to improve outcome.

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