NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Kidney Cancer, Version 1.2017
Overview of cancer treatments
Erlotinib is a type of targeted therapy called an
EGFR is a protein on the surface of cells that is
involved in cell growth. It is found on both normal
cells and cancer cells. Molecules outside of cells
can attach to EGFR. When this happens, EGFR
sends signals into the cell that tell the cell to grow.
Erlotinib blocks the signals from EGFR that tell
cancer cells to grow. This slows or stops new
cancer cells from being made. Erlotinib is given
as a pill that is swallowed. Common side effects
of this drug include skin rash, diarrhea, nausea,
feeling tired, and not feeling hungry.
edicine) is a
group of treatments sometimes used by people with
cancer. Many CAMs are being studied to see if they
are truly helpful.
• Complementary medicines are meant to be used
alongside standard therapies, most often for
relaxation, improving your health, or to prevent or
reduce side effects.
• Alternative medicine is treatment or techniques
that are used instead of standard treatments such
as chemotherapy or radiation. Some are sold as
cures even though they haven’t been proven to
work in clinical trials.
Many cancer centers or local hospitals have
complementary therapy programs that offer
acupuncture, yoga, and other types of therapy.
It’s important to tell your treatment team if you are
using any complementary medicine, especially
supplements, vitamins, or herbs. Some of these things
can interfere with your cancer treatment. For more
information about CAM, ask your doctor and visit the
websites listed in Part 6.