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Regimen Information

For 5FU + cisplatin, including Side Effects

5FU + cisplatin

Drugs in this Regimen:

For the treatment of Head and Neck Cancer

How 5FU + cisplatin chemotherapy is given and possible side effects.

5FU + cisplatin for the treatment of Head and Neck Cancer

5FU + Cisplatin is a chemotherapy regimen used in the treatment of head and neck cancer. This treatment involves two chemotherapy drugs: cisplatin and fluorouracil, which is also known as 5FU.

Chemotherapy is often given as a combination of drugs. Combinations usually work better than single drugs because different drugs kill cancer cells in different ways.

MOST COMMON SIDE EFFECTS OF 5FU + CISPLATIN

  • Nausea & Vomiting

  • Risk of Infection

  • Bruising and Bleeding

  • Anemia

  • Constipation

  • Numbness in Hands and Feet

  • Fatigue

For more information, see the 'Expert Resources' tab below.

Community Responses

Often, the most helpful information regarding treatment side effects comes not from clinical brochures, but rather from other patients like you. We've collected the most helpful community resources to help you prepare for the side effects and coping tips for your chemotherapy regimen.

What side effects did you experience while on this medication?

The following have been voted the 3 most helpful responses to this question.

Hoka Hey

Now, know this. Every human has different responses to different treatments. ie Radiation therapy just gave me a sunburn and bad sore throat, lost my taste for months…but all got better in time.

However, this 5FU-Cisplatin chemo combo was a rough one for me and I got it my 1st treatment. It was nasty….in a big way! It put me in the hospital because I could NOT stop throwing up every hour or so for 2 days.

In the hospital, I was on a steady IV drip of Ativan for days to stop me from puking. It finally worked, but the ATIVAN gave me horrible hallucinations day & night until they took the IV out.

So, the 5FU-Cisplatin was very bad for me! So much so, that my doc said if he gave it to me for my 2nd treatment the following month..it’d kill me. So we changed!

So my Doc ,thankfully, switched me to CARBOplatin which I tolerated MUCH better.

Everyone’s different, but that was my experience with it!
Good luck!

  • Thu Nov 8, 2012
I'm SANDY K R., and I'm a survivor of Head and Neck Cancer

I had a very bad time with this chemo. I had to go in for fluids every other day due to vomiting. I had a very sore mouth made it very hard to eat. I lost down to 103 lbs from 126. I still cannot taste anything but I also had radiation. I had cancer of the sinus that spread to spine. I had one 3hr infusion with another 5 days of a pump. I also lost most of my hair after that 1 treatment. Doc decided that I could not tolerate a normal dose, he opted to just watch me close and if something comes up on the scans then we will address that. Everyone is different some people never get sick at all and tolerate it very well. This experience makes me very leary of ever doing chemo again if my cancer returns, just have to make that decision if that time ever comes, which my Doc said that it would within 2 years. But who knows God is on my side and he has blessed me the whole way.

  • Sun Jul 5, 2015
I'm SANDY K R., and I'm a survivor of Head and Neck Cancer

I had a very bad time with this chemo. I had to go in for fluids every other day due to vomiting. I had a very sore mouth made it very hard to eat. I lost down to 103 lbs from 126. I still cannot taste anything but I also had radiation. I had cancer of the sinus that spread to spine. I had one 3hr infusion with another 5 days of a pump. I also lost most of my hair after that 1 treatment. Doc decided that I could not tolerate a normal dose, he opted to just watch me close and if something comes up on the scans then we will address that. Everyone is different some people never get sick at all and tolerate it very well. This experience makes me very leary of ever doing chemo again if my cancer returns, just have to make that decision if that time ever comes, which my Doc said that it would within 2 years. But who knows God is on my side and he has blessed me the whole way.

  • Sun Jul 5, 2015
I'm SANDY K R., and I'm a survivor of Head and Neck Cancer

I had a very bad time with this chemo. I had to go in for fluids every other day due to vomiting. I had a very sore mouth made it very hard to eat. I lost down to 103 lbs from 126. I still cannot taste anything but I also had radiation. I had cancer of the sinus that spread to spine. I had one 3hr infusion with another 5 days of a pump. I also lost most of my hair after that 1 treatment. Doc decided that I could not tolerate a normal dose, he opted to just watch me close and if something comes up on the scans then we will address that. Everyone is different some people never get sick at all and tolerate it very well. This experience makes me very leary of ever doing chemo again if my cancer returns, just have to make that decision if that time ever comes, which my Doc said that it would within 2 years. But who knows God is on my side and he has blessed me the whole way.

  • Sun Jul 5, 2015
I'm SANDY K R., and I'm a survivor of Head and Neck Cancer

I had a very bad time with this chemo. I had to go in for fluids every other day due to vomiting. I had a very sore mouth made it very hard to eat. I lost down to 103 lbs from 126. I still cannot taste anything but I also had radiation. I had cancer of the sinus that spread to spine. I had one 3hr infusion with another 5 days of a pump. I also lost most of my hair after that 1 treatment. Doc decided that I could not tolerate a normal dose, he opted to just watch me close and if something comes up on the scans then we will address that. Everyone is different some people never get sick at all and tolerate it very well. This experience makes me very leary of ever doing chemo again if my cancer returns, just have to make that decision if that time ever comes, which my Doc said that it would within 2 years. But who knows God is on my side and he has blessed me the whole way.

  • Sun Jul 5, 2015

This discussion needs your voice!

What were the specific side effects that you experienced while taking this medication? How did you manage them?

What coping tips would you give to new patients on this regimen?

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Treatment Overview

This chemotherapy regimen is commonly used to treat:

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