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Reporting on Tarceva


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Thought for those of you interested in how Tarceva is treating us folks I'd report in:

I've been on Tarceva for about 7 days now. I have the rash. Most of the bumps are on my mid-section (belly and lower back) with a few scattered on my arms, hands and chest. Little bumbs around my lips and my chin. (This is where Iressa liked to show up too!)

My face is experiencing a "sunburn" type of rash. It really hurts. It stings when I wash it, it stings when I put lotion on it, I even tried Aloe Vera and that made it sting too. Any suggestions?

Only a little bit of the tummy trouble. I have noticed that I don't have much of an appetite either. And as always, I still have the extreme fatigue.

I would have to say that so far, Tarveva and Iressa are treating me about the same, I have a few more "bumps" with the Tarceva, but Iressa was giving me a bit more tummy trouble......

I'm not complaining, I always know ......It Could Be Worse! :shock:


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TAnn -- you might try some A&D ointment on the rash. It was great on my rash from PCI -- stopped the burning and itchy feeling immediately, and kept it moist overnight. Makes sense I guess, it's used mostly for diaper rash!

Good luck -- I know you must be really uncomfortable. :(


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My nurses suggested that I use jojoba oil on my face. I would use this and put my normal mosturizer over it. My recollection is that I did not use this at first but after the initial face rash settled down to whiteheads or the redness. The pimply mess eventually covered my back entirely and my upper chest. At that point, they put me on oral antibiotics.

The nurses also recommended to use Curel lotion on my hands to help keep the dryness down.

Good luck with the treatment side effects.

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Hey Tann-

I'm on round two with Tarceva.....at the lower dose (100mg) I'm not too bad. The rash is no where near what it was. If I stand right under a light you can see it just below the surface trying to creep up.

When I wasn't working I used a cortisone cream on my face, during the day at work I used a regular moisturizer.

I can attest to the pain! It felt like needles were stabbing me. It was so bad on my scalp that when I went to bed and put my head on the pillow, I couldn't take it, it was bad! So far it's not on my scalp yet (this time).

Keep everything gooped up, I noticed the Tarceva was very drying.

Are you having any trouble with your mouth? Mine is raw, my gums are bright read and (at it's worst) I get the rash on my tongue. I do have to remember this is me we are talking about and I'm special with side affects. Once I stopped the Tarceva it went away, then when I started the 100mg it was back. And my lack of tooth brushing, just went to the dentist. Anyway keep us posted! It's nice to compare notes!

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My husband's onc recommended an OTC hydrocortisone cream for my husband's rash from Iressa when it was bad. It got really bad in the area where he got shoulder radiation. It worked and he has very little rash now.

One thing you might try for the dry skin is Mary Kay's Night Cream. It's really heavy, but works really well.

Hope you get some relief soon, and definitely hope it works to create a bunch of frustrated cancer cells. :)



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Hey TAnn - Sorry to hear the side effects are coming back kinda like Iressa. They are identical to what I experienced except it sounds like the rash was not quite as severe as what I had. The sores were oozing and were all over my head, neck and chest. I sure hope that they let up a bit to be at least tolerable and most of all that it works. That would be a great incentive to tough it out as I'm sure you will. That Clindamycin Gel that my ONC prescribed really helped relieve the pain and after almost two weeks off it, the rash is almost gone but it is still terribly itchy. Hang tough and keep us posted. I'll be back on it in a week or so after the angioplasty Friday.

Beth, sounds like the 100mg is treating you a little better than the 150 or at least thus far. Hope and pray you can hang in there with it and that it works.


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