Cabazitaxel

Other Names: Jevtana®

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About This Drug

Cabazitaxel is used to treat cancer. It is given in the vein (IV).

Possible Side Effects

  • Bone marrow depression. This is a decrease in the number of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. This may raise your risk of infection, make you tired and weak (fatigue), and raise your risk of bleeding.
  • Loose bowel movements (diarrhea)
  • Nausea and throwing up (vomiting)
  • Decreased appetite (decreased hunger)
  • Changes in the way food and drinks taste
  • Constipation (not able to move bowels)
  • Tiredness and weakness
  • Pain in your abdomen
  • Blood in your urine
  • Back pain
  • Effects on the nerves are called peripheral neuropathy. You may feel numbness, tingling, or pain in your hands and feet. It may be hard for you to button your clothes, open jars, or walk as usual. The effect on the nerves may get worse with more doses of the drug. These effects get better in some people after the drug is stopped but it does not get better in all people.
  • Fever
  • Trouble breathing and cough
  • Pain in the joints
  • Hair loss. Hair loss is often temporary, although with certain medicine, hair loss can sometimes be permanent. Hair loss may happen suddenly or gradually. If you lose hair, you may lose it from your head, face, armpits, pubic area, chest, and/or legs. You may also notice your hair getting thin.

Note: Each of the side effects above was reported in 10% or greater of patients treated with Cabazitaxel. Not all possible side effects are included above.

Warnings and Precautions

  • Severe bone marrow depression which can very rarely be life-threatening
  • Fever, in the setting of decreased white blood cells is a serious condition which can rarely be life-threatening
  • Allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis are rare but may happen in some patients. Signs of allergic reaction to this drug may be swelling of the face, feeling like your tongue or throat are swelling, trouble breathing, rash, itching, fever, chills, feeling dizzy, and/or feeling that your heart is beating in a fast or not normal way. If this happens, do not take another dose of this drug. You should get urgent medical treatment.
  • Severe nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, which can very rarely be life-threatening. These side effects may be more severe if you have received prior radiation. 
  • This drug may affect how your kidneys work which can very rarely cause kidney failure and be life-threatening.
  • Effects on the bladder may happen if you have received prior radiation to your pelvis area. You may have irritation and bleeding in the bladder. You may have blood in your urine. 
  • Inflammation (swelling) of the lungs, and lung disease which can very rarely be life-threatening. You may have a dry cough or trouble breathing.
  • Patients age 65 years and older are at increased risk of severe and life-threatening side effects.

Note: Some of the side effects above are very rare. If you have concerns and/or questions, please discuss them with your medical team.

Important Information

  • This drug may be present in the saliva, tears, sweat, urine, stool, vomit, semen, and vaginal secretions. Talk to your doctor and/or your nurse about the necessary precautions to take during this time.
  • Cabazitaxel is given in combination with an oral steroid. It is important that you take your steroid as prescribed. 

Treating Side Effects

  • Manage tiredness by pacing your activities for the day.
  • Be sure to include periods of rest between energy-draining activities.
  • To decrease infection, wash your hands regularly.
  • Avoid close contact with people who have a cold, the flu, or other infections.
  • To decrease bleeding, use a soft toothbrush. Check with your nurse before using dental floss
  • Be very careful when using knives or tools.
  • Use an electric shaver instead of a razor.
  • Drink plenty of fluids (a minimum of eight glasses per day is recommended).
  • Taking good care of your mouth may help food taste better and improve your appetite.
  • If you throw up or have loose bowel movements, you should drink more fluids so that you do not. become dehydrated (lack water in the body from losing too much fluid).
  • To help with nausea and vomiting, eat small, frequent meals instead of three large meals a day. Choose foods and drinks that are at room temperature. Ask your nurse or doctor about other helpful tips and medicine that is available to help or stop lessen these symptoms.
  • If you get diarrhea, eat low-fiber foods that are high in protein and calories and avoid foods that can irritate your digestive tracts or lead to cramping.
  • Ask your nurse or doctor about medicine that can lessen or stop your diarrhea or constipation.
  • If you are not able to move your bowels, check with your doctor or nurse before you use enemas, laxatives, or suppositories.
  • To help with hair loss, wash with a mild shampoo and avoid washing your hair every day.
  • Avoid rubbing your scalp, pat your hair or scalp dry.
  • Avoid coloring your hair.
  • Limit your use of hair spray, electric curlers, blow dryers, and curling irons.
  • If you are interested in getting a wig, talk to your nurse. You can also call the American Cancer Society at 800-ACS-2345 to find out information about the “Look Good, Feel Better” program close to where you live. It is a free program where women getting chemotherapy can learn about wigs, turbans and scarves as well as makeup techniques and skin and nail care.
  • If you have numbness and tingling in your hands and feet, be careful when cooking, walking, and handling sharp objects and hot liquids.
  • Keeping your pain under control is important to your well-being. Please tell your doctor or nurse if you are experiencing pain. 

Food and Drug Interactions

  • There are no known interactions of cabazitaxel with food.
  • Check with your doctor or pharmacist about all other prescription medicines and dietary supplements you are taking before starting this medicine as there are known drug interactions with cabazitaxel. Also, check with your doctor or pharmacist before starting any new prescription or over-the-counter medicines, or dietary supplement to make sure that there are no interactions.

When to Call the Doctor

Call your doctor or nurse if you have any of these symptoms and/or any new or unusual symptoms:

  • Fever of 100.5 F (38 C) or higher
  • Chills
  • Fatigue that interferes with your daily activities
  • Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
  • Wheezing or trouble breathing
  • Dry cough, or you cough up yellow, green, or bloody mucus
  • Pain in your chest
  • Easy bleeding or bruising
  • Nausea that stops you from eating or drinking  and/or is not relieved by prescribed medicines
  • Throwing up more than 3 times a day
  • No bowel movement in 3 days or when you feel uncomfortable
  • Signs of allergic reaction: swelling of the face, feeling like your tongue or throat are swelling, trouble breathing, rash, itching, fever, chills, feeling dizzy, and/or feeling that your heart is beating in a fast or not normal way
  • Signs of possible liver problems: dark urine, pale bowel movements, bad stomach pain, feeling very tired and weak, unusual itching, or yellowing of the eyes or skin
  • Pain when passing urine; blood in urine
  • Decreased urine or difficulty urinating 
  • Numbness, tingling, or pain your hands and feet
  • Pain that does not go away or is not relieved by prescribed medicine
  • If you think you may have impregnated your partner

Reproduction Warnings

  • Pregnancy warning: This drug may have harmful effects on the unborn baby. Cabazitaxel is not indicated for use in women. Males with partners of child-bearing potential should use effective contraception during treatment and for 3 months after treatment. Let your doctor know right away if you think you may be pregnant.
  • Breastfeeding warning: Cabazataxel is not indicated for use in women.
  • Fertility warning: In men, this drug may affect your ability to have children in the future. Talk with your doctor or nurse if you plan to have children.  Ask for information on sperm or egg banking.

Revised January 2018

This information is intended to provide helpful health information to the general public and is not to be used in place of any medical, health, psychological, or any other kind of personal professional services.  The information herein does not cover all possible uses, actions, precautions, side effects, or interactions of the medicines mentioned, nor is the information intended as medical advice for individual problems or for making an evaluation as to the risks and benefits of taking a particular medication.  The dose, method of administration and contraindications for any administered medication should be confirmed before use.  UPMC specifically disclaims all responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any medication mentioned herein.