Many men express great hesitation to move to chemotherapy with both docetaxel (taxotere) and cabazitaxel (Jevtana) because of the side effects which can include alopecia (hair loss), nail changes, neuropathy, and dysgeusia (a distortion of the sense of taste). A group of researchers hypothesized that the adverse side effects (AE) of these two chemotherapy drugs, cabazitaxel and docetaxel would be different.

To compare the AEs they prospectively collected data on treatment side effects reported from the clinical trial databases of docetaxel every 3 weeks (q3w) (in TAX327 and VENICE) and cabazitaxel q3w (in TROPIC).

They found that the frequency of new or worsening AEs in 1301 men was significantly less for alopecia, nail changes, neuropathy, and dysgeusia for cabazitaxel when compared to docetaxel.

They concluded that the treatment with cabazitaxel causes less alopecia, nail changes, neuropathy, and dysgeusia compared with docetaxel. This is one more evidence that when factoring in the quality of life perhaps we should consider using cabazitaxel before docetaxel to help maintain the quality of life of men with advanced prostate cancer.

Clin Genitourin Cancer. 2015 Jan 30. pii: S1558-7673(15)00012-9. Omlin A, Sartor O, Rothermundt C, Cathomas R, De Bono JS, Shen L, Su Z, Gillessen S.
doi. 10.1016/j.clgc.2015.01.010

Joel T. Nowak, M.A., M.S.W.