Choosing Docetaxel or Zytiga

Both Taxotere (docetaxel) and Zytiga (abiraterone) are approved for newly diagnosed men with very aggressive prostate cancer and who have not yet had any exposure to hormone therapy (ADT).  

The two approvals lead us to the question, which of these treatment options would be best for you?  There isn’t a hard and fast answer to that question.   It’s very individualized.  This decision should be based on your disease state, your disease burden, your disease progression and what you and your doctor think you will tolerate as far as comorbidities and side effects.

The STAMPEDE trial suggests that there is very little difference between the two groups, Docetaxel and Zytiga. The survival advantage between the two groups is quite similar however there may be some slight differences in progression-free survival.   However, this data is not significant because it was derived from a secondary analysis and the sample size was too small to allow us to draw any conclusions.

For most men, Docetaxel is more toxic than Zytiga.  As a result, most men do choose to use Zytiga over Docetaxel. However, there might be subsets of men who would do better using Docetaxel.  Without additional research into this matter, the decision should be an individual decision, which you should make in consultation with your doctor.

Joel T. Nowak, MA, MSW wrote this Post.  Joel is the CEO/Executive Director of Cancer ABCs.  He is a Cancer Thriver diagnosed with five primary cancers - Thyroid, Metastatic Prostate, Renal, Melanoma, and the rare cancer Appendiceal cancer.