Giving hope to those affected
by secondary breast cancer

Research. Support. Education.

Capecitabine: Amanda‘s Experience

22nd August 2021 by Jack Allan Education

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We’re taking a look at different chemotherapy treatments for patients with secondary breast cancer. 

Last week we covered Capecitabine and one of the community, Amanda Verrecchia, now talks about her experience of the treatment. 


When were you diagnosed with secondary breast cancer? 

I was diagnosed in Aug 2020.


Where are your mets located?


I am very lucky that I do not have much spread at the moment, my secondary is localised to my chest wall area up to my collar bone. There is a suspicious spot on my liver which has grown very slightly but nothing confirmed as yet. 


What treatment line are you on?


I have had fec-t iv chemo for 7 cycles, double mastectomy, 15 rounds of radiation, capesidobine for 7 months and am now currently on olaparib since May 2021. Think that makes me third line?


What is/was your experience of Capecitabine? 

Mostly a good experience with capesidobine, unfortunately the drug did not work for me (or worked very slowly).


It was a struggle to juggle taking it and thinking you need to eat at a certain time, but you do get used to it. I was on the highest dose for my weight and height and never needed to lower my dose. 


Side effect wise I was never sick and still felt I had bundles of energy on this drug (unlike iv chemo), but my main issue was aches and pains particularly in my hands and feet. It felt like arthritic pain and it took me a while to get going in the morning when I woke up, I had to walk about upstairs for a good 5 minutes before I would attempt the stairs and felt like my grip was terrible opening items. 


The other side effect for me was my finger tips, the skin would get dry and split often (didn't help with covid we were constantly washing our hands) but I know a lot of people have issues with hands and feet with skin flaking and being dry so was grateful mines was just the tips of my fingers.


What advice, if any, would you give to someone about to start this treatment?


I would say to work out a plan for when best suits to take your tablets.


Lots of hand and foot creams and I also bought silicon fingertips which I put on at night once I had creamed my hands and that ensured my fingertips were softer in the morning. 


I bought a little safe for my handbag so I always had some tablets with me in case I wasn't home ontime to take them. As I have a little boy I wanted to make sure he couldn't get access to them. 


And any signs of aches and being uncomfortable contact your team as there are many things out there to try and help with side effects.