Targeted therapy for advanced kidney cancer
This is a type of drug treatment that attacks specific features of cancer cells to stop the cancer growing and spreading.
Learn more about:
- How are targeted therapy drugs used?
- Side effects of targeted therapy
- Video: What is targeted therapy?
How are targeted therapy drugs used?
Targeted therapy drugs are used as the first treatment for advanced kidney cancer (first-line treatment), often in combination with immunotherapy drugs.
These drugs are usually taken daily as tablets. They may be taken for many months and sometimes even years. There are different drugs available and your medical oncologist will discuss which combination of drugs is best for your situation.
Cancer cells often stop responding to targeted therapy drugs over time. If the first-line treatment stops working, your oncologist may suggest trying another targeted therapy or an immunotherapy drug.
Side effects of targeted therapy
The side effects of targeted therapy will vary depending on the drug used.
Common side effects include:
- skin rash
- mouth sores
- joint pain
- high blood pressure.
Your doctor may be able to prescribe medicine to prevent or reduce side effects of targeted therapy and immunotherapy drugs. In some cases, your doctor may delay treatment or reduce the dose to lessen side effects.
Video: What is targeted therapy?
If you have cancer, drug therapy may play a big role in your treatment plan. Watch this short video to learn more about drug therapies, including targeted therapy and immunotherapy.
Podcast: Immunotherapy & Targeted Therapy
Dr Alarick Picardo, Urologist, Fiona Stanley Hospital, WA; Heidi Castleden, Consumer; Donna Clifford, Urology Nurse Practitioner, Royal Adelaide Hospital, SA; Mike Kingsley, Consumer; Prof Paul De Souza, Medical Oncologist and Professor of Medicine, Nepean Cancer Care Centre, The University of Sydney, NSW; Prof Declan Murphy, Urologist and Director of Genitourinary Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Caitriona Nienaber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council WA; Luke O’Connor, Urology Nurse, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, QLD; A/Prof Shankar Siva, Radiation Oncologist and Cancer Council Victoria Colebatch Fellow, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; A/Prof Homi Zargar, Uro-Oncologist and Robotic Surgeon, Western Health and Royal Melbourne Hospital, VIC.
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