Cancer Home > Cometriq Side Effects

If you are receiving chemotherapy treatment with Cometriq and experience severe diarrhea, unusual bleeding, or difficulty breathing, contact your healthcare provider right away. Dangerous problems can occur with this prescription drug, so it is important to know which reactions require urgent medical treatment. Other possible side effects of Cometriq include nausea, fatigue, and weight loss.


An Introduction to Cometriq Side Effects

Just like any chemotherapy medicine, Cometriq™ (cabozantinib) can cause side effects. In fact, most people will experience some type of reaction to this drug, and some problems can be quite significant. Talk to your healthcare provider about ways to prevent or lessen reactions to this medicine.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Cometriq. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Common Side Effects With Cometriq

Cometriq has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking the drug were carefully documented and compared to those that occurred in a similar group of people taking a placebo (a "sugar pill" with no active ingredients). As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the placebo.
In these studies, the most common Cometriq side effects included:
  • Increased liver enzymes, which could be a sign of liver problems -- in up to 86 percent of people
  • Diarrhea -- up to 63 percent
  • Low levels of certain types of white blood cells -- up to 53 percent
  • Low blood calcium levels (hypocalcemia) -- up to 52 percent
  • Ulcers, sores, redness, or swelling in the mouth -- up to 51 percent
  • Redness, swelling, or pain on the palms of the hands or soles of the feet -- up to 50 percent
  • Weight loss -- up to 48 percent
  • Decreased appetite -- up to 46 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 43 percent
  • Fatigue -- up to 41 percent
  • Mouth pain -- up to 36 percent
  • Low blood platelet count (thrombocytopenia) -- up to 35 percent
  • Changes in taste, such as a bad taste in the mouth -- up to 34 percent
  • Hair color changes (lightening or graying of the hair) -- up to 34 percent
  • High blood pressure (hypertension) -- up to 33 percent.
Other common reactions, occurring in 5 percent to 28 percent of people, included:
  • Low blood phosphate levels (hypophosphatemia)
  • An increase in bilirubin (a yellowish enzyme made when the liver breaks down red blood cells) levels (hyperbilirubinemia)
  • Constipation
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of strength and energy
  • Voice changes or hoarseness
  • Rash
  • Dry skin
  • Headache
  • Hair loss
  • Joint pain
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Muscle spasms
  • Heartburn or indigestion
  • Reddening of the skin
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Anxiety
  • Muscle and bone pain in the chest area
  • Dehydration
  • Tough, dry, thick areas of the skin
  • Numbness, tingling, or pricking sensations of the skin
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension)
  • Low blood magnesium levels (hypomagnesemia)
  • Low blood potassium levels (hypokalemia)
  • Low blood sodium levels (hyponatremia).
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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