Xeloda is prescribed to those with breast or colorectal cancer that has spread or metastasized to other parts of your body. Xeloda is called a prodrug as it is enzymatically converted to 5-fluorouracil in your body. This is not a cure for metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) or metastatic breast cancer (mBC), but taking Xeloda helps to stop the growth of cancer cells and it can decrease tumor size.
Because you are able to take Xeloda or generic Capecitabine at home or work, you will have more time to do other things instead of sitting in a hospital or treatment center hooked up to an IV. The generic alternative is not manufactured by the company that makes the brand product.
When taken as directed, Xeloda is absorbed into your tissues where it changes from an inactive drug to being converted into 5-fluorouracil (5-FU). Once converted, 5-FU works its magic to inhibit the activity that is essential for cell survival, resulting in cell cycle arrest and eventual cell death.
When treating mCRC, Xeloda is usually taken with Leucovorin, a vitamin that works as a chemo-protectant in order to enhance the effectiveness of Xeloda. Leucovorin is also available as an oral medication but your oncologist may recommend having Leucovorin intravenously.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or are breast feeding as Xeloda may be harmful to your unborn or nursing baby. Explain other medical conditions or allergies you have to your doctor and list all OTC and Rx drugs you take or use, including herbal remedies and vitamin supplements. Your doctor can then determine if Xeloda is safe for you to take.
All medications should be kept out of children’s reach. Until you know how your body will react to Xeloda, you should not attempt any tasks that require you to be alert. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any current drugs you take or use without consulting with your doctor first as this could affect how Xeloda will work for you.
If you experience anything unusual while taking Xeloda, including tingling or burning in your hands or feet, confusion, extreme fatigue, fever, or yellowing of your skin or eyes, call your doctor.