Breast Cancer Home > Taxotere Warnings and Precautions
To help ensure a safe treatment process and minimize risks, it is important to be aware of Taxotere warnings and precautions. For example, Taxotere may potentially cause side effects or complications, such as fluid retention, nerve problems, or allergic reactions. Because Taxotere is not suitable for everyone, certain people should avoid taking Taxotere, including those who are allergic to any of the ingredients in the medicine.
Taxotere: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking Taxotere® (docetaxel) if you have:
- A history of low levels of white blood cells (known medically as neutropenia)
- Any infection
- Congestive heart failure (CHF)
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Specific Taxotere Warnings and PrecautionsSome warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Taxotere include the following:
- Taxotere can decrease the bone marrow's ability to produce blood cells. This can result in anemia and other serious conditions. Because your immune system depends on certain blood cells, you may be more susceptible to infections while taking Taxotere (see Chemotherapy and Infections). You may also be at a higher risk for bleeding (see Blood Clotting Problems and Chemotherapy). You will need regular blood tests to make sure your blood counts are not too low.
- There is a small risk of death while taking Taxotere, mostly due to dangerous infections (caused by low levels of white blood cells).
- Everyone taking Taxotere should be "premedicated" with an oral steroid before (and usually after) each Taxotere dose, in order to prevent allergic reactions and to decrease the severity of fluid retention.
- There have been cases of cystoid macular edema (an eye problem) in people taking this medication. If you develop any vision changes, especially blurriness in the center of your vision, talk to your doctor right away.
- Taxotere often causes fluid retention. Fluid retention can be especially dangerous for people with congestive heart failure (CHF).
- Taxotere can cause nerve problems, including nerve pain, weakness, or unusual sensations of burning or tingling (see Nerve and Muscle Problems During Chemotherapy).
- Taxotere can interact with other medications (see Taxotere Drug Interactions).
- Taxotere is considered a pregnancy Category D medication. This means that it is probably not safe for use during pregnancy. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using the drug during pregnancy (see Taxotere and Pregnancy).
- It is not known if Taxotere passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start breastfeeding, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Taxotere and Breastfeeding).