What is the difference between Taxotere and Taxol?
Taxotere is a chemotherapy drug indicated for treatment of breast cancer as well as other cancers such as prostate, stomach and non-small cell lung cancer. Taxotere is the synthetic form of a plant alkaloid called paciltaxel. The natural compound is extracted from the bark of the Pacific yew tree and has been in use in chemotherapy for almost 4 decades under the trade name Taxol®.
The developers of Taxotere were able to manipulate the synthetic molecule to twice the strength of the natural product and it is thought that this increase is responsible for permanent hair loss in some patients. Taxol has a long track record of results without the devastating side effect of permanent hair loss.
Obviously in men the emotion impact may not be a great as in women, but the fact remains that the manufacturers of Taxotere were negligent in disclosing the fact that up to 10% of patients will experience permanent hair loss.