Metastatic breast cancer (BC) remains an incurable disease and clinical benefit and prolongation of time to progression are the main end-points in advanced setting. A safe and feasible schedule of administration is the principal option in pre-treated and symptomatic patients, as in the elderly too. Oral vinorelbine represents a good choice for its toxicity profile and activity in anthracycline and taxane-pre-treated BC patients. A 20–30% response rate (RR) can be obtained when used as single agent. In phase II trials, involving fit patients, and when oral vinorelbine is used in combination with other agents (e.g., capecitabine) a RR of 50-60% has been observed. In HER2-positive BC a combination of oral vinorelbine and trastuzumab has a dramatic activity in first-line therapy and is a reasonable choice in trastuzumab pre-treated patients. In conclusion, oral vinorelbine represents a pivotal choice in advanced and pre-treated BC both as single agent and in combination with others.
Breast cancer - Metastatic - Anthracycline - Taxane - Pre-treated patients - Oral vinorelbine