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NICE rules on chemotherapy drugs for colon and breast cancer

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 04 May 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:1052
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

    Capecitabine and oxaliplatin, two relatively new cancer drugs, should be considered for the adjuvant treatment of stage III (Dukes's type C) colon cancer after surgery, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has recommended. Separate appraisals of docetaxel and paclitaxel for early breast cancer after surgery found insufficient evidence to make recommendations.

    Previous NICE guidance said that the standard treatment for stage III (Dukes's type C) colon cancer after surgery was a six month course of 5-fluorouracil and folinic acid given intravenously. NICE also said that this treatment should be offered to all patients who are fit enough to tolerate it after surgery for Dukes's type C colon cancer (in which the tumour has spread to lymph nodes) and that it should begin within six weeks of surgery.

    NICE's new appraisal reviewed the clinical and cost effectiveness data for two of the newer drugs. Capecitabine is an orally administered …

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