Role of taxanes in chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment: A prospective longitudinal study

Noemí Cerulla, Àngels Arcusa, José Blas Navarro, Maite Garolera, Cristina Enero, Glòria Chico, Luís Fernández-Morales

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8 Citations (Scopus)


© 2017, Springer Science+Business Media New York. Purpose: The aim of this study is to elucidate the role of taxanes on cognition when they are administered as a part of the treatment with a fluorouracil, epirubicin and cyclophosphamide (FEC) regimen for breast cancer (BC). Methods: Two groups of women (n = 51) with a novel diagnostic of BC that were treated with a combination of FEC alone (6 cycles of FEC) or with taxanes (4 cycles of FEC plus 8 cycles of taxanes) were compared at three moments: before chemotherapy, after its completion (short-term evaluation) and at a mean of 74.5 weeks from baseline as a long-term evaluation. Results: Both groups showed worsening in tests of attention and executive functions on the short-term assessment, with the group treated with taxanes showing more number of affected cognitive measures at this time point, including verbal learning and speed measures. At the long-term evaluation, cognitive dysfunction was still found in attention and executive functions in both groups. Conclusion: Our results suggest that chemotherapy for BC with a FEC regimen can have a negative effect on cognition. Acute deficits seem to be larger when taxanes are added, but treatment seems to affect cognition also at long term.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-187
JournalBreast Cancer Research and Treatment
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017


  • Breast cancer
  • Cognition
  • Oncology
  • Practice effect
  • Taxanes


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