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Herceptin (Trastuzumab) is an extremely beneficial drug for the treatment of breast cancer. Actually, Herceptin is the first humanized antibody approved for the treatment of HER2-positive Metastatic Breast Cancer. The drugs can lend very good results if the breast cancer is detected at an early stage and the drug administered during the infancy of the disease. Herceptin is widely believed to have the capability of saving the lives of around 1,000 women in a year in Great Britain alone. The manufacturers believe that the drug halves the risk of a tumor
returning after surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
Herceptin is administered intravenously. However, it should be administered only under strict medical supervision and only after proper examination by a qualified doctor. This is due to the fact that the drug has some really serious side effects that should be warded off with appropriate drugs. Some of these include reduced heart function and congestive heart failure, serious infusion reactions, and lung infections. Some of the less serious side effects of Herceptin include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, headache, fatigue, breath- shortness, lower count of red and white blood cells, cough, and muscle pain. Also, before administration, your doctor may advice you to undergo a biopsy to make sure Herceptin is the right medication to treat your cancer. The drug is given just once in a week.
The US FDA formally approved Herceptin in 1998. The drug’s restricted availability in England drew adverse publicity.
Immediately approach your doctor for an expert opinion if you missed the dosage or had an overdose. There may be some contraindications involved with the use of Herceptin. Therefore, you must inform your doctor about the drugs you are already using, including all the vitamins, minerals, herbal drugs,
and any other drug not belonging to allopathic form of medicine.