Jump to content

Side effects from Tagrisso

Cheryl T

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone, hope you are all doing well.

I have been on Tagrisso 80 for 15 months now and got off relatively lightly with regards to side effects.  A few pimples initially, but that was it.  However, the past 4 months have been a different story.  First a skin rash that lead to my skin just sheeting off me.  Got that under control and no sooner did my nails become a problem.  Once my pride and joy, my nails are now a bittle mess.  Just have to keep them as short as I can.  My big problem, however, is diarrhoea.  I have had it consistently for the past 4 weeks.  Imodium doesn't work, the white diet doesn't work, arrowroot drinks don't work so now I am trying Metamicil after reading it can also be used to treat diarrhoea.  Has anyone else found the diarrhoea this bad?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't have this side effect, but your doctor can give you prescription lomotil. Also, some people take a lot of imodium every day, I think I've read up to 8 pills a day. Also try to see if you've become lactose intolerant. If dairy is a contributing factor, OTC lactase pills can help a great deal. 

Be sure to drink plenty of fluids so you don't get dehydrated. 

Ugh, Tagrisso nails are the WORST. Mine are a mess, and no nail strengtheners have done anything. Right now I'm experimenting with Nail-Aid Keratin 3-Day Growth. For $3 and change I figure it's worth a try. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks, Judy.  It was the length of time this has been going on that really concerns me.  It is even preventing me from straying too far from home.  The long walks have had to stop.  I have been through that many imodium tabs I think I am paying the wages for the pharmacy assistant!  I am drinking a lot of Hydrate, the last thing I want is to end up in hospital.  If the metamucil does not work I will contact my GP, again.  My oncologist does not seem concerned.  Just tells me to take imodium.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

I bet if your oncologist had consistent diarrhea for the amount of time you have, s/he would be concerned. Is there a palliative care team you could reach out to for suggestions? I hope your GP has some more specific advice for you. I know some people take a LOT of immodium….

Hang in,


Link to comment
Share on other sites


Sorry I missed your post about diarrhea. While I have squamous cell, when the new drug Tarceva (targeted therapy) hit the market doctors only knew it worked for a small number of lung cancer patients. They didn't realize it didn't work at all against squamous cell. But, my doc suggested we try Tarceva in combination chemotherapy with infused Taxol and Carboplatin. The little pill cost $5,000 per month and all it did was give me horrible acne and diarrhea. Really, really bad diarrhea; it laughed at Imodium! I asked the lung cancer community for coping strategies.

A man who was also having combination chemo including Tarceva told me to start each day with a plain bowel of steamed rice (not the converted or parboiled Uncle Ben's type). It tried this and it worked. As long as I had rice as my first meal of the day, the diarrhea became "managable". Give it a try.

Stay the course.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for your replies people.  The metamucil seems to bulk me up a bit but is still not the answer.  My GP suggested I try codeine.  Last week I had a to take a 4 hour and return trip to the big smoke which really worried me.  I took the codeine, starting 8 hours before the trip then 2 every 4 hours and it worked!  But not something you want to do every day.  Will save that for necessary times.  In the meantime I have tried lomotil with better results than imodium.  Will try the bowl of white rice for first meal, Tom, it can't do any harm.

However, after 15 months it looks like Tagrisso has stopped working for me.  The last 2 scans have shown growth of the main tumour by 1mm then 4mm, respectively.  If the next scan shows further growth then my oncologist is suggesting hard chemo, which I really don't want.  My integrative doctor has suggested I seek a second opinion so has referred me to an oncologist who specialises in lung cancer.  So just waiting for that appointment.  In the meantime I continue on the Tagrisso until my next scan in November. 🤞🤞

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.