Double Dose Faslodex/Fulvestrant
Faslodex (fulvestrant) is a hormone/anti-estrogen treatment for hormone positive breast cancer. In the same family with Tamoxifen (as opposed to the AIs), it has been used as treatment for women with metastatic or advanced breast cancer. The results of a study, comparing the usual 250 mg dose with a double dose of 500 mg, have just been announced.
Here is a quote from Astra Zeneca's website:
September 10, 2010 - Wilmington, DE - AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the 500mg dose of FASLODEX® (fulvestrant) Injection, replacing the previously approved monthly dose of 250mg, for the treatment of hormone receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer in postmenopausal women with disease progression following antiestrogen therapy.1 The FDA approval of FASLODEX 500mg was based on results from CONFIRM (Comparison of FASLODEX In Recurrent or Metastatic breast cancer), a Phase III study which demonstrated that FASLODEX 500mg significantly reduced the risk of disease progression in patients with metastatic breast cancer, when compared with the 250mg dose. Safety and tolerability profiles of both doses were comparable.
Here is the "bad" news" Faslodex is given as a monthly injection in the butt, and it can be painful. Now women will receive two shots each month, rather than one. The drug itself is so thick/viscous that only so much can be delivered by a single syringe. Most of us would agree, however, that a brief sting in the butt is well worth it if it increases survival. Most oncologists will be immediately switching their patients to this increased dose. If you are receiving Faslodex monthly, and your doctor has not mentioned this, do ask about it.
Here is a quote from Breast Cancer.org and a link to read more individual comments about this drug and this change:
News, news, news...the FDA has approved a double dose of Faslodex - based on results from a new study...doubling the dose increases its effectiveness - by more than double. I don't know the exact percentages but my onc's office called me last evening to let me know that I will now be recieving the new approved double dose! Of course, I had to ask if this meant that I would not have my scans next month but wait until 6 months out from the new double dose...sadly, no, November will still be 'scanxiety' month - can't blame a girl for asking...LOL Oh, and no more alternating cheeks - it will be a shot in each cheek every 4 weeks - apparently it is not recommended to load the entire double dose in the same area - oh well - I can deal with that if it kicks the crap to the curb for me! Yippee!
A reminder if your nurses aren't already doing so - have them warm it up first, it will go in easier and you will have less injection site reaction. Secondly, absolutely do the 'stance' for both cheeks - stand slightly bent forward and lift the foot on the injection site cheek side up to the ball of your foot to take as much weight off as possible, breath and relax - the more relaxed the butt cheek, the less likely you are to have injection site issues. And since it will be given in each cheek, be sure to repeat the stance for the other side.
Good Luck All
Breast Cancer Forum