Why is PERJETA-based treatment used in HER2+ metastatic breast cancer?

If you have been diagnosed with metastatic HER2-positive (HER2+) breast cancer, an aggressive form of cancer, it is important to determine a treatment path quickly. PERJETA and Herceptin® (trastuzumab) combination-based treatment may be an appropriate option for patients with HER2+ advanced breast cancer that

  • has spread to other parts of the body (metastatic), and
  • has NOT been treated with traditional chemotherapy or HER2-targeted treatments before

PERJETA in combination with Herceptin and docetaxel is proven to help control cancer growth

A clinical study called CLEOPATRA studied efficacy and safety in 808 patients who were given PERJETA plus Herceptin and docetaxel. Results from this trial showed that PERJETA is proven to help control growth of HER2+ metastatic breast cancer.

PERJETA Metastatic Cancer Growth

PERJETA helped patients live longer

On average, patients who were given PERJETA, Herceptin, and docetaxel lived 15.7 months ​longer than patients given only Herceptin and docetaxel​ (56.5 months compared to 40.8 months)​.​

PERJETA is proven to shrink tumors

  • 80% of patients who were given the PERJETA combination had their tumors shrink, compared with 69% of patients receiving Herceptin and docetaxel alone
  • Patients who had their tumors shrink maintained this response, on average, for 62% longer on the PERJETA combination compared with patients receiving only Herceptin and docetaxel (20.2 months vs 12.5 months)

Side effects may occur with PERJETA

PERJETA is given together with Herceptin and docetaxel. Side effects can occur with this treatment plan. Not all patients have serious side effects; however, side effects with PERJETA-based treatment are common. It is important to know what side effects may happen and what symptoms you should watch for.

What are the most serious side effects of PERJETA?
Receiving PERJETA during pregnancy can result in the death of an unborn baby and birth defects.
PERJETA may cause heart problems, including those without symptoms (such as reduced heart function) and those with symptoms (such as congestive heart failure).

What are other possible serious side effects of PERJETA?
PERJETA should not be used in patients who are allergic to pertuzumab or to any of the ingredients in PERJETA. Possible serious side effects of PERJETA include infusion-related reactions and severe allergic reactions (hypersensitivity reactions/anaphylaxis).

In the CLEOPATRA study, the most common side effects of PERJETA + Herceptin + docetaxel were

  • Diarrhea
  • Hair loss
  • Low levels of white blood cells with or without a fever
  • Nausea
  • Feeling tired
  • Rash
  • Damage to the nerves (numbness, tingling, pain in hands/feet)

If your doctor changes your treatment plan, you may see a change in the side effects.

Patients in the study had less-frequent side effects when they stopped receiving docetaxel. After stopping docetaxel, all side effects in the PERJETA combination group happened in less than 10% of patients, except for diarrhea, a cold, rash, headache, and feeling tired.

Always report side effects to your healthcare team at any point in your treatment.

You are encouraged to report side effects to Genentech and the FDA. You may contact Genentech by calling 1-888-835-2555. You may contact the FDA by visiting or calling 1-800-FDA-1088.

How PERJETA is given

PERJETA is given with Herceptin and docetaxel as a treatment for HER2+ metastatic breast cancer.

Talking with your healthcare team

If your HER2+ breast cancer has spread, here are questions you may want to ask your doctor.