Managing adverse effects of NSCLC treatment

the ONA take:

Oral epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFRi), including afatinib, getitinib, and erlotinib, are widely used to treat metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC); however, they can cause various adverse effects that differ from those caused by traditional intravenous chemotherapy. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the treatment options to combat these adverse effects in order to improve the quality of life of patients with cancer.

The most common adverse effects of EGFRi therapy are dermatological complications. Usually, topical hydrocortisone can be used to treat a grade one skin rash, while a grade two rash may require systemic antibiotics, such as doxycycline, and topical steroid like betamethasone 0.05%. If the rash is grade three or four, treatment requires oral steroids and antibiotics and the EGFRi should be withheld until the rash is resolved.

Other common adverse effects of EGFRi therapy include diarrhea, nausea, and loss of appetite. Loperamide should be used as soon as diarrhea is recognized as long as other possible causes are ruled out. One should monitor the patient's fluid intake and electrolytes. Dietary changes can also be recommended. For example, bananas, rice, apple sauce, and toast (BRAT diet) will help to avoid foods that are high in fiber.

Managing adverse effects of NSCLC treatment
Managing adverse effects of NSCLC treatment

Epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors are widely used in the management of metastatic non-small cell lung cancer. Adverse events, their impact on quality of life and treatment adherence with these oral drugs are discussed.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of death by cancer in Europe, Canada and the US. In the last few years, treatment of metastatic lung cancer has evolved and has become more personalised based on new characterisations of the disease.

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