chnaging from Epi to Docetaxel (Taxotere)

I have had 3 Epirubicin for Secondarys and have now got to change to Docetaxel. Any hits nad tips for this one?

Having had both of these (… although it’s very true that one persons experience can be very different to another…)

Epi (as part of FEC - made me sick as a dog, knocked me for 6, couldn’t function in any form of normality for 4 days solid - just awful. However felt ok in between times.

Taxotere - more tolerable - v little sickness / nausea. Felt ok for first couple of days, then had 1 or 2 bad days (tiredness, bit like jet lag) Look after your nails - cut them short and I found a good Dr Hauschka nail oil helped keep them well. Cold cap (with wet hair and conditioner) worked for me. Main thing with this one is rest rest rest I found, and that meant my blood count kept ok.

Like I say, some people find taxotere v hard to tolerate. The only advise I can really give is take it easy (if you can) and do as little or as much as much as you feel you can.

Taxotere did get good results for me (so far), so hope it does for you too


Hi Gill ( and Kindred!)

I’m having the same two drugs as neoadjuvant chemo.
4 rounds of each, last Docetaxel will be on Monday.

I have to say that for me, the EC was much easier than the Docetaxel, but the side effects have got a bit easier since the first one. I somehow went off home without knowing that it would be a good idea to have paracetamol or ibuprofen to hand!
I had quite bad muscle and nerve pains (teeth!) the first time. Check with your nurse, but you should be able to take either as long as your temperature is normal.

The pattern seems the same for both drugs: not too bad for the first two days after, then wiped out for average of 3/4 days, then slowly back up again.

I had low (ish) white counts all through EC, but fine on Docetaxel.

Do you have nausea with the EC? I never did and was O.K. too after switching.
The steroids are a lot stronger. I don’t really get much sleep while I’m on them.

The two worst side effects for me are the numb fingers and toes (trying acupuncture for this) and excessive tearing in both eyes (Celluvisc eyedrops help to some extent).

Oh, and I didn’t have hot flushes on EC, but they started up with the Docetaxel.

Well, hope I haven’t scared you! I hope that it isn’t too bad for you. Let me know how you get on. I’m still standing so far!!!



Hi gill

Well its all so individual isn’t it ? But for me FEC was far harder than the taxotere ! I really felt sick on that - taxotere was much easier. It was also clearly more effective on my cancer than the FEC, I had good shrinkage on it. I had some aches and pains on the taxotere and had some trouble with teary eyes but it was quite manageable.

Are they changing you right away ? I hope it does the trick for you - my onc is a big fan of the taxanes and makes it clear he thinks these are my best options- I hope that it works well for you,

take care

Thank you so much for your comments.
I start the Taxotere on tuesday. I have the anti sickness tablets to take the day before.

It is good to hear it works!

I’ll let you know-


Hi Gil,

i had 3 FEC and 3 Docetaxol - like you. I found FEC very hard, with nausea and the general feeling of being wiped out, so I was really looking forward to being on Doce. With Doce i got a lot of pains in my joints, I could hardly walk - it came on a few days after and stayed like that for about 5 days and then it tapered off. I also got very dry skin, so that my finger pads where cracking (great as I have no lymph nodes on one arm). My advice is to take ibprofen for the joint ache and use a lot of moisturising cream to lessen the effect. Include your feet, as the soles of my got so dry that the peeled off in big strips - not very pretty! It’s weird but I only finished chemo in may, but am struggling to remember.

Remember to eat, whatever you can handle, even if you are eating cr*ppy food, it is still some energy and it’s still food for the soul.

By the way, is Docetaxol and taxotere the same or different?

Goodluck amd I will try to remember some more.

Thank you K.

I will do the moisturiser I tend to forget during the bad week, but will make the effort.

It is nice to know that you have nearly forgotten!

Ye the two names are the the same thing, I didn’t know which one people used.

I am without Lymph nodes one one side too.

Was yours for Secondaries? Did it work? What are you doing now? Am I rud eto ask all these questions?



I’ve just had 3/6 Taxotere. Everyone else’s experience sounds like mine!

I would also add:

It is worth rinsing your mouth out with bicarb solution every so often reduce the risk of thrush and each time you eat something brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush to remove any tiny bits of food that might harbour bacteria.

I’ve painted my nails with very dark nail polish - I’ve been told this reflects sunlight away from the nail bed (which gets very photo-sensitive on Taxotere) and so far mine are holding up well - no sign of any problems yet.

For me, the overriding problem has been the fatigue and there’s not much that can be done about that, except to ride it out, and not try to fight it. Don’t do anything you don’t have to do - it’ll keep!

Hope you have the minimum of SEs



PS I 've also had problems with thrush (various places!) - again the bicarb solution helps - and I was also given oral medecine for this as well.

Thanks for your help.

hope you continue well.