Topic: Half dose cisplatin ?


I found out last week that Mum is actually having half a dose of cisplatin each time she has gemcitabine rather than having gemcitabine plus full dose cisplatin on week 1, then just gem on week 2, and then a week off.

Has anyone else heard of this?  Apparently they have done it in the hope that she will have less severe side-effects.  I must say it seems to be working as up until a couple of days ago all she had was tiredness.  She was sick a couple of nights ago and had some nausea but has started taking anti-nausea meds again which are controlling it fine.

But will the cisplatin still work as well if she doesn't get the full dose straight away ?



Re: Half dose cisplatin ?

Hi Jemima,

My mother received gemzar and cisplatin last year for over 4 months. I can't remember which it was (my big binder where I write everything down is at my sister's right now), but I know they reduced one of the two drugs.  The reason was not so much the side effects, but that her white blood count was going TOO low, like almost zero.  They reduced the one drug for the remaining chemo treatments, and gave her Neupogen shots after each infusion to amp up her WBC count. 

Her chemo side effects were: a headache that began 6 hours after chemo ended which lasted for about 24 hours, nausea for about 3 days post-chemo, and hair thinning but not hair loss.

I'm assuming your Mom gets blood work every week - have her counts been too low?  Not sure if that's why your Mom's docs have adjusted her chemo drug dosages.

I can tell you that my Mom was considered "in remission" when the chemo ended last December, and she was healthy for 6 wonderful months after that.

my mother lost her 16 month battle with CC 9/26/10
"Mothers have as powerful an influence over the welfare of future generations as all other earthly causes combined."

Re: Half dose cisplatin ?

Sorry I can't answer your question, I'd just checked your post to see how your Mom was doing.

Have you got a telephone number for the oncologist, perhaps you could give him a call to discuss your concerns, or even the Chemotheraphy nurses may know.

I hope the anti nausea drugs manage to keep it under control and she enjoys her week off chemo.

Thinking of you


Devoted Daughter to the most wonderful Dad a girl could ask for.  Sadly lost his battle on 19.02.11, peacefully in the arms of Mom and I.  As requested by Dad "we will keep on smiling".

Re: Half dose cisplatin ?

Hi Kim
Thanks for your info.  Mum has only just completed her first cycle and yes she is having blood tests the day before she is due her chemo and so far they have been fine.  No sign of reduced wbc yet but obviously that may change.
So they have gone straight for half-dose without even trying full dose.  But I guess that they know what they are doing !
I am pleased to hear that your Mum did so well with the chemo.  That is what we are hoping for as her tumour doesn't need to shrink much to be able to be re-considered for resection.

Hope your Dad is getting on OK.  Mum is doing fine now she is on her anti-nausea meds and is even having a friend over for supper tonight.
I will ask the oncologist more about it all when I take Mum in next Thursday.