esophageal cancer & ramucirumab

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Hi, I am new to the forum and trying to do as much research as possible on behalf of my Father who was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer last year, he had 8 cycles of Chemotherapy & immunotherapy - Capox & Nivolumab. The 8 cycles were super effective and reduced tumours. After 3 weeks however the tumour came back very aggressive. We was then prescribed 3 cycles of Docetaxel - this was very very harsh and first cycle really took its toll - leading to 9 days hospitalisation with Sepsis.

We sought a 2nd opinion from a leading London Private hospital and was assured all that was being done was about all that could be done, possibly the next few cycles of Docetaxel could be at a reduced dose to try and avoid adverse side affects. 

there was also mention of an alternative chemotherapy called ramucirumab which isn't currently available on the NHS but we could seek costs paying for this privately. Apparantly this is used in conjunction with a 2nd part which is available on the NHS.

My question is, does anybody have any experience of ramucirumab, was it more or less effective than NHS prescribed medication.

also, what sort of costs was involved - did you pay per dose/per cycle??? What sort of costs could we expect if we did venture down this route?

any advice or assistance/experience would certainly be appreciated.

Thank you

  • I can't help you, but I'm also interested in this.

    I am currently on Nivolumab and my private consultant has also mentioned paclitaxel and ramucirumab as a potential future treatment if / when this fails.

  • Hopefully someone can shed some light and share their experiences? Did your consultant indicate any figures of how much this could potentially cost?

  • Hi Dazza

    Welcome to the forum and thank you for reaching out here, I am sorry to read of your Father's diagnosis and of the difficulties he has faced. 

    I do not have a great knowledge of Ramucirumab (RAM) other than when combined with Paclitaxel (PTX), it is considered to be a standard of care in many countries, so it might be worth asking your Father's oncologist if they are aware of any active trials here..   

    My husband is on a trial, which has two separate trial arms, and this is how I know of RAM & PTX,   he is not on this arm of the trial, but this is the treatment that they are comparing their new drug combination (Trastuzumab Deruxtecan T-DXd) against.  

    I am also aware that to be on either arm of this trial, the patient needs to be HER2 positive, which makes me think that RAM may be specifically designed for HER2+ patients (maybe!)

    Having looked further into this, I have seen that there was also an alternative trial for non HER2 patients which was CapeOX (capecitabine plus oxaliplatin)  + Nivolumab, 

    I don't know enough to give you any real advice, but your oncologist should know if there are any current trials that may be of benefit to your Father. 

    I wish him all the best. 


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  • Hello Lowedal, thank you for this. yes, we did inquire about trials but unfortunately there are no trials available for this medication and the form of cancer. We do have another meet this Monday so will inquire again and ask more questions.

    Wishing you nothing but the very best.

  • Unfortunately, I have no indications of cost yet.

    Can I please ask how you knew it had returned aggressively after 3 weeks? Most hospitals do not scan until after 3 months.

  • Hi I've done a lot of research and found another drug that is being used in the US for our cancer. I asked my MDT about it but even though it's been approved here currently it's only for early stage lung cancer.

  • Hi DazzaADB

    I was just wondering how the meeting went on Monday and if you have managed to get anymore information?

    I will of course keep you updated should I learn any more too.