Which medications in the drug class Antineoplastics, EGFR Inhibitor are used in the treatment of Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

Updated: Jul 08, 2020
  • Author: Talib Najjar, DMD, MDS, PhD; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Antineoplastics, EGFR Inhibitor

Multiple chemotherapeutic agents have been used to treat metastatic cSCC. Adaptation of traditional chemotherapeutics to local and regional administration techniques in treating head and neck cancers is being actively pursued to provide higher local concentrations of otherwise systemically toxic drugs.

Cetuximab (Erbitux)

Cetuximab is approved for the initial treatment of locally or regionally advanced SCC of the head and neck. Cetuximab when used alone is indicated for the treatment of recurrent or metastatic cases for which prior platinum-based therapy has failed. It is a chimeric immunoglobulin G1 monoclonal antibody that inhibits EGFRs and has been reported as successful in several case reports.

EGFR inhibitors are well tolerated, with relatively low risks, so they may be considered in cases not amenable to surgery or radiation or as an adjuvant in cases that pose a high risk of death. Current recommendations are to use cetuximab as an alternative to chemotherapy in patients who cannot tolerate chemotherapy.

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