Tag Archives: neuropathy

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October 2013 Webinar – Peripheral Neuropathy

October 2013 Webinar – Peripheral Neuropathy

Have you ever experienced peripheral neuropathy?  Did it feel like a numbness or tingling in your hands or feet?  Did it last several weeks, or several years?  Cindy S. Tofthagen, Ph.D., ARNP, AOCNP, University of South Florida College of Nursing Assistant Professor and Concentration Director of Oncology, discussed this important topic and ways to manage it. Although peripheral neuropathy is a known common side effect of some chemotherapy regimens, there are many different types of peripheral neuropathy, and many different causes.  Dr. Tofthagen explains exactly what it is that’s happening, why it happens, and what causes it to happen.  And then, most importantly, tips on the best ways to manage it. View/download the slides

Experts Issue Practice-Changing Advice: Stop giving calcium/magnesium for oxaliplatin-caused neuropathy

For patients getting the common FOLFOX chemotherapy for colorectal cancer, many oncologists add intravenous calcium and magnesium, hoping to decrease the neuropathy (nerve damage) associated with oxaliplatin-based drugs. But this week, experts at the 2013 ASCO meeting (American Society of Clinical Oncology), announced strong evidence that the calcium/magnesium does no good in either preventing or decreasing neuropathy—and it should no longer be part of routine treatment. Neuropathy affects cancer treatment Oxaliplatin-based chemotherapy (e.g. FOLFOX, with Eloxatin®) is one of the most commonly used drugs for people having high-risk stage II, or stages III or IV colorectal cancer. But far too often after patients have had many doses of FOLFOX over

Two Advances in Understanding, Treating Painful Chemo Neuropathy

Recent studies show some promise in understanding chemo-caused neuropathy, and perhaps in using a common medicine to ease the worst symptoms in some people. Study shows neuropathy relief for some using antidepressant  A well-designed clinical study has provided the first evidence that the antidepressant Cymbalta® (duloxetine) can provide some patients with significant relief from peripheral neuropathy caused by chemotherapy. From 20 to 40 percent of cancer patients given neurotoxic chemotherapy–taxanes, platinum-based including Eloxatin® (oxaliplatin), vinca alkaloids, bortezomib–will develop painful peripheral neuropathy (numbness, tingling, burning in hands or feet). If the pain is severe, colorectal cancer patients often have to reduce the dose or stop taking Eloxatin. Even then, this painful condition

Cold Weather's Coming. . . and Oxaliplatin Difficulties

There was frost on the grass this morning when I let the little dog out.  A hard freeze is predicted for the next few nights, a sign that winter and its ice and snow isn’t far off. Cold is a special problem for people who are getting Eloxatin® (oxaliplatin) for colon and rectal cancer.  Almost all patients on FOLFOX will experience acute neuropathy within a few hours of each oxaliplatin infusion.  This is acute, short-term, and ends within few days. About a third will go on to a chronic peripheral neuropathy that begins as oxaliplatin doses accumulate.  Most patients will experience some tingling and numbness in their hands and feet. 

New Trial Looks to Reduce Recurrence and Neuropathy for Stage III Patients

If you are diagnosed with stage III colon cancer, you will probably receive about six months of treatment with FOLFOX after surgery. Research shows that this treatment regimen helps prevent recurrence for some – but not all – patients with stage III colon cancer.  A clinical trial has been launched to answer two questions about this current standard of care: 1. Will recurrence rates go down if both FOLFOX and celecoxib (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug similar to aspirin) are used for treatment? 2.  Will recurrence rates stay the same and long term side effects decrease if FOLFOX is used for three months?

Effexor Reduces Pain from Cold

Colorectal cancer patients getting oxaliplatin quickly learn to avoid cold. Drinks with ice, chilly air, even opening the freezer can produce sudden, sharp pain, burning, or an unpleasant pins and needle feeling in their throat and hands. A small study has found that venlafaxine (Effexor) can completely eliminate acute neurotoxicity from oxaliplatin in about 1 out of 3 people.  More than half of patients who took it had more than 50 percent relief from symptoms.

Picoplatin Effective for CRC with Less Neuropathy

Picoplatin can be as effective as oxaliplatin as an initial treatment for advanced colorectal cancer but has less neuropathy. Updated information comparing picoplatin in combination with 5-FU and leucovorin (FOLPI) to the standard oxaliplatin treatment (FOLFOX) found similar response rates.  About half of patients on both treatments were alive a year later.  However, there was significantly less neuropathy overall with FOLPI and no severe neuropathy. FOLPI did have substantially more serious problems with lowered blood counts than FOLFOX. 

Colorectal Cancer News in Brief: November 7

Briefly Patients with diabetes aren’t any more likely to develop neuropathy in hands and feet when treated with oxaliplatin. Learn more about  current colorectal cancer prevention and treatment at a Memorial Sloan Kettering CancerSmart workshop on November 12.  NIH has a downloaded booklet on palliative care, and Oncology on Canvas is looking for artwork from cancer patients and their families and caregivers.

Calcium and Magnesium Infusions Reduce Neurotoxicity with Oxaliplatin

Update from 2008 ASCO Meeting in Chicago A study presented during the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting showed that adding IV infusions of calcium and magnesium to oxaliplatin treatment reduced peripheral neuropathy. Eloxatin® (oxaliplatin) is part of the FOLFOX treatments for colorectal cancer.  As doses accumulate, patients begin to experience tingling and numbness in their hands and feet.  Some patients will find it difficult to use their hands for small tasks like buttoning or will have problems with pain, balance or walking.  Often patients have to stop treatment before the full benefit is reached because of this difficult side effect.

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