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Ibrance And Letrozole

ibrance and letrozole

FDA Approves ibrance and letrozolefor Breast Cancer

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new drug for women with a certain type of breast cancer that has metastasized – spread to other parts of the body. ibrance and letrozole is for postmenopausal women who have not already had drug treatment, whose breast cancer is estrogen receptor (ER)-positive and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-negative. It’s meant to be taken along with another drug, ibrance and letrozole.

ibrance and letrozole works by blocking 2 enzymes involved in helping cancer cells grow. It was approved under the FDA’s accelerated approval program for drugs that show promise against a serious disease.

How does ibrance and letrozole work?

Palbociclib is designed to inhibit (block) a specific protein that is responsible for turning off tumor suppressor genes and allowing the breast cancer cell to grow and divide.  In other words, by inhibiting (blocking) this protein, palbociclib causes the breast cancer cell to stop actively growing and dividing.

Letrozole is designed to block an enzyme (a type of protein) in your body called aromatase. Aromatase is responsible for helping produce a female hormone known as estradiol (a type of estrogen).

What to Expect When Taking ibrance and letrozole

ibrance and letrozole can be prescribed with Femara (chemical name: letrozole), an aromatase inhibitor. Both medicines are pills taken by mouth.

You take the pills in a 28-day cycle:

  • for 21 days, you take the Ibrance and Femara pills at the same time each day, with food
  • then for 7 days, you take Femara only

Drug interactions ibrance and letrozole

A total of 361 drugs (1103 brand and generic names) are known to interact with Ibrance.

Ibrance is in the drug class CDK 4/6 inhibitors.

Ibrance is used to treat the following conditions:

  • Breast Cancer
  • Breast Cancer, Metastatic

Side Effects

The most common side effects of Ibrance are:

  • anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • fatigue
  • nausea
  • neuropathy
  • mouth sores
  • hair thinning or loss
  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • weakness
  • decreased appetite
  • Headache (14%)
  • Vomiting (14%)
  • Weakness (13%)
  • Bone pain (12%)
  • Constipation (12%)
  • Cough (12%)
  • Mouth sores (12%)
  • Nosebleed (11%)
  • Upper respiratory tract infection (11%)
  • Dizziness (10%)
  • Numbness or tingling in fingers and toes (10%)
  • Blot clots in lungs (5%)


ibrance and letrozole should be taken with food to help with its absorption. Do not consume grapefruit or grapefruit juice during treatment with ibrance and letrozole unless directed otherwise by your doctor. Grapefruit juice can increase the blood levels of ibrance and letrozole. You may be more likely to experience side effects such as nausea; vomiting; diarrhea; loss of appetite; mouth sores; hair loss; weakness; pain, numbness, or tingling in the hands and feet; and impaired bone marrow function resulting in low numbers of different types of blood cells, which can increase the risk of anemia.


ibrance and letrozole is an oral capsule that comes in strengths of: 125 mg, 100 mg, or 75 mg

Take with food at the same time each day. Do not crush or open capsules.

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember if it’s the same day. If it is the next day, take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not double the dose to make up for the missed dose

If you vomit up a dose, an additional dose should not be taken that day. Take the next dose at the next regular scheduled time

Store at room temperature in a cool, dry place

Dosage adjustments may be required for low white blood cells or other severe side effects


Among patients with previously untreated ER-positive, HER2-negative advanced breast cancer, ibrance and letrozole combined with ibrance and letrozole resulted in significantly longer progression-free survival than that with letrozole alone, although the rates of ibrance and letrozoleeffects were higher with palbociclib–letrozole.

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