A rapid and systematic review of the clinical and cost-effectiveness of capecitabine for locally advanced and/or metastatic breast cancer


This review examined the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of oral capecitabine for metastatic breast cancer in relation to its licensed indications.


Capecitabine monotherapy as an option for locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer if a person has not already taken capecitabine in combination with docetaxel but has tried treatment with an anthracycline and a medicine going by the general name of a taxane without success, or further treatment with an anthracycline is unsuitable.

The choice about which medicine to take should be made jointly by the patient and her or his doctor. The patient should be informed about the differences between the medicines and the potential suitability of alternative approaches for locally advanced and metastatic breast cancers so that she or he can be fully involved in the decision.

Conducted by: L Jones1, N Hawkins2, M Westwood1, K Wright1, G Richardson2, R Riemsma1

1. NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination; 2. Centre for Health Economics

Further details

Project page on HTA Programme website

Related guidance

Commissioned to inform NICE Technology Appraisal guidance 62. Guidance on the use of capecitabine for the treatment of locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer. London: National Institute for Clinical Excellence; 2003


Jones L, Hawkins N, Westwood M, Wright K, Richardson G, Riemsma R. Systematic review of the clinical effectiveness and cost effectiveness of capecitabine (Xeloda) for locally advanced and/or metastatic breast cancer. Health Technol Assess. 2004;8(5): 1-143


Jones L, Westwood M, Wright K, Riemsma R. Systematic review of capecitabine monotherapy for advanced breast cancer. International Society for Technology Assessment in Health Care (ISTAHC) Conference; 2003 June; Canmore, Canada


Commissioned by the HTA Programme on behalf of NICE's Technology Assessment Report (TAR) process