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chemo drug xeloda discontinued

wendy55wendy55 Copper Triangle South AustraliaMember Posts: 713
edited December 2018 in General discussion
Hi Ladies,
Just a quick heads up, I have just been advised not only by my pharmacist but also the medical information person at Roche in Sydney, the drug manufacturer of the band of oral chemo XELODA, that this drug is no longer being made, apparently they are pursuing other lines of research!!! so those of us that are on xeloda will be given a brand substitution when putting in our next prescription!!, I have currently been on a brand substitution for the last 11 days and have been feeling unwell in my days off cycle - I am into day 4 of my days off, the possible cause being that I am be allergic to the fillers in this brand of capecetibine or correct name for Xeloda, I am waiting for a call back from my oncologist to see where to from here, I let the Medical person at Roche know in explicit detail of my extreme disappointment in a chemotherapy drug such as xeloda being taken off the market.
This has been my" security blanket" for the last almost three years and I am a little scared to say the least, I do understand that there are several other companies that produce exactly the same drug, however, it has upset me to think that after all this time I now have to change, Nothing stays the same, I know, however, it has been just a little upsetting to say the least, so to all of you on this brand please be aware that this has happened, so nasty surprises when you go to put your prescriptions in.
Rant Over! 


  • AfraserAfraser MelbourneMember Posts: 3,913
    That's understandably upsetting @wendy55, particularly with so little warning. Reactions to changes in fillers may not be extreme, but are very disconcerting. I hope the transition smoothes out for you, and other users, very soon. Best wishes.
  • iserbrowniserbrown Regional VictoriaMember Posts: 5,075
    Oh goodness!  That seems so unfair!  Has your Pharmacy been able to find another Pharmacy that may have some in stock or is it something they order in specifically for you.  
    I hope your body adjusts if that is the only option but hopefully your Oncologist has a clue on where to source the product a little longer or an alternate that may suit you.
    Can't imagine the distress this must be causing as it takes such a hell of a long time to settle into something, both physically and emotionally
    Take care, thoughts are with you

  • TonyaMTonyaM Member Posts: 2,729
    The filler chemicals can really bother you. I had to use a different brand of Tamoxifen once and I broke out in a rash and had a headache.The chemist figured it out it must have been titanium.It’s a worry what goes in those fillers. 
  • arpiearpie Mid North Coast, NSWMember Posts: 6,146
    That's a bugger @wendy55 - specially when it has been working for you.  What is Xeloda's shelf life?  Are you able to get your chemist to hunt around for stocks from other chemists, so you have your own little stash?

    I hope the 'substituion' side effects settle down for you asap  xx

    Thinking of you xx
  • Marianne_BCNAMarianne_BCNA Member Posts: 245

    Hi @wendy55

    I followed up with Roche to find out more info and they provided the following (which is similar to what they told you):

    Roche is discontinuing the supply of Xeloda (capecitabine) 500mg tablets.

    As a research and development-focused company, Roche places investment priority in therapeutic areas of significant unmet medical need. The company is focusing its resources on bringing new and innovative medicines to patients.

    A number of generic alternatives to Xeloda continue to be available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

    Xeloda 500mg tablets will be de-listed from the PBS on 1 April 2019.

    Patients should continue to take their medication as prescribed by their healthcare professional and always consult with their doctor prior to making any changes to treatment. 

    They also commented that they have been communicating this information to oncologists for some time so your oncologist should be aware.

    I do hope you're able to make the transition to a suitable alternative with minimal issues.
  • wendy55wendy55 Copper Triangle South AustraliaMember Posts: 713
    Hi @Giovanna_BCNA,
    thank you for the above information,I have just put in a script for another brand and hope that these agree with me, it was good of you to follow through with this, interesting about the fact they have been communicating this to oncologists, mine only gave me my new script for xeloda early this month.
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