Impact of prophylactic pyridoxine on occurrence of hand–foot syndrome in patients receiving capecitabine for advanced or metastatic breast cancer
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- Yoshimoto, N., Yamashita, T., Fujita, T. et al. Breast Cancer (2010) 17: 298. doi:10.1007/s12282-009-0171-3
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Capecitabine, an oral fluoropyrimidine, has shown consistently high efficacy in anthracycline- and/or taxane-pretreated advanced and metastatic breast cancer. The safety profile of capecitabine is characterized by hand–foot syndrome (HFS), which, although not life threatening, can impair patients’ quality of life if it is not managed promptly and effectively. We conducted a study to assess the impact of prophylactic pyridoxine on HFS.
Prophylactic pyridoxine was given to 38 patients receiving capecitabine (alone or in combination with cyclophosphamide) for metastatic breast cancer and compared with historical data from 40 patients receiving capecitabine without pyridoxine in our clinic. The impact of urea ointment on HFS was also assessed.
HFS developed in 20 patients (52.6%) receiving pyridoxine compared with historical data showing an 82.5% rate in patients receiving no pyridoxine prophylaxis (p < 0.01). A nonsignificant trend towards less severe HFS was seen among patients who received urea ointment at first appearance of symptoms. In addition, nonsignificant trends towards higher rates of HFS were seen among those who were ≥61 years and those who derived clinical benefit (clinical response or stable disease).
Prophylactic pyridoxine and urea ointment at first appearance of symptoms appears to reduce the risk of severe capecitabine-induced HFS. However, randomized data are required to determine the true effect of these measures.