Ado-trastuzumab emtansine)

kadcyla 2D
Brand name: Kadcyla®
FDA approval: Yes

Kadcyla™ is given through an infusion into a vein (intravenous, IV) 

The amount of Kadcyla™ that you will receive depends on many factors, including your weight, your general health or other health problems, and the type of cancer or condition being treated. Your doctor will determine your dose and schedule. 


Kadcyla is used to treat HER2-positive breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body in patients who have received prior treatment with Herceptin (trastuzumab) and a taxane chemotherapy. Kadcyla is made up of trastuzumab, an anti-HER2 therapy, connected to a drug called DM1 that interferes with cancer cell growth.  

Side effects:

Kadcyla™ Side effects: 

Important things to remember about the side effects of Kadcyla™: 

  • Most people will not experience all of the Kadcyla™ side effects listed. 

  • Kadcyla™ side effects are often predictable in terms of their onset, duration, and severity. 

  • Kadcyla™ side effects will improve after therapy is complete. 

  • Kadcyla™ side effects may be quite manageable. There may be options to minimize or prevent the side effects of Kadcyla™. 

The following side effects are common (occurring in greater than 30%) for patients taking Kadcyla™ : Increased liver enzymes (AST, ALT); decreased platelet count; decreased red blood cells; nausea; decreased white blood cells; fatigue; musculoskeletal pain (joint and muscle pain); and decreased potassium. 

These are less common (occurring in 10-29%) side effects for patients receiving Kadcyla™: headache; constipation; diarrhea; nosebleeds; peripheral neuropathy (numbness or tingling in hands or feet); vomiting; fever; abdominal pain; cough; weakness; increased bilirubin; dry mouth; mouth sores; insomnia (trouble sleeping); shortness of breath; rash; and dizziness.