Lapatinib (Tykerb®) is a biological therapy for women with HER2-positive secondary breast cancer.
Clinical trials have shown that when given in combination with a chemotherapy drug called capecitabine, lapatinib slows the progression of secondary breast cancer.
When is lapatinib recommended?
Lapatinib may be offered to women whose secondary breast cancer has stopped responding to a combination of trastuzumab and chemotherapy.
Lapatinib will not benefit women with HER2-negative breast cancer.
What does treatment with lapatinib involve?
Lapatinib is a tablet that is taken every day (usually 5–6 tablets a day). It’s taken with a chemotherapy drug called capecitabine.
Side effects of lapatinib
Common side effects of lapatinib include diarrhoea, hand–foot syndrome, anaemia and nausea. Other possible side effects include dyspepsia, liver dysfunction and rash.