Taking KADCYLA for early breast cancer

Like many cancer medicines, KADCYLA is given as an intravenous (IV) infusion in your doctor’s office, at a hospital, or at an infusion center.

For HER2+ early breast cancer, KADCYLA is given every 3 weeks for 14 rounds of infusion—sometimes called "cycles"—unless the cancer comes back or side effects cause the treatment to be stopped sooner. Treatment with KADCYLA typically would last less than a year.

Before you start taking KADCYLA:

  • Talk with your doctor about any other medical conditions you have. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, nursing, or plan on getting pregnant
  • Always tell your doctor about any medicines you are taking. Be sure to include over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements

Getting the infusion

After each infusion, your healthcare team will take some extra time to watch how you respond to treatment. If side effects occur, they may adjust, delay, or stop your treatment.

What if I miss an infusion?

If you miss a dose of KADCYLA, DO NOT WAIT until your next 3-week cycle of treatment. Contact your doctor or nurse right away and work with them to reschedule the treatment you missed.

Understanding possible side effects with KADCYLA

Side effects may occur during treatment with KADCYLA, and these can be mild or serious. It’s important to know what side effects may happen and what to watch out for during your treatment with KADCYLA. Talk to your doctor about any and all side effects you experience, even if you think they are minor.

What are the most serious side effects of KADCYLA?

KADCYLA can cause severe liver problems that can be life-threatening. KADCYLA may cause heart problems, including those without symptoms (such as reduced heart function) and those with symptoms (such as congestive heart failure). Receiving KADCYLA during pregnancy can result in the death of an unborn baby and birth defects.

Other possible serious side effects include:

  • Lung problems
  • Infusion-related reactions
  • Serious bleeding
  • Low platelet count
  • Nerve damage
  • Skin reactions around the infusion site

The most common side effects in people taking KADCYLA for early breast cancer are tiredness, nausea, liver problems, pain that affects the bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons, bleeding, low platelet count, headache, weakness, numbness, and pain in the hands and feet, and joint pain.

Talk to your doctor about any side effects you experience. Learn what to watch out for and get tips for certain side effects below.

Remember, the tips mentioned below may not work for everyone. Be sure to talk with your doctor before trying any of these tips.

Select side effects associated with KADCYLA during early breast cancer treatment



Liver problems

Pain that affects the bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons, and joint pain

Bleeding or low platelet count


Weakness, numbness, and pain in the hands and feet

Be aware that these are not all of the side effects associated with KADCYLA. For more information, please review the KADCYLA Important Safety Information and the full Prescribing Information.

You are encouraged to report side effects to Genentech and the FDA. You may contact Genentech by calling 1-888-835-2555. You may contact the FDA by visiting www.fda.gov/medwatch or calling 1-800-FDA-1088.

Talking to your doctor

Need help starting the conversation? Get a list of questions to ask your doctor before and during treatment with KADCYLA.

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