CMF: Cyclophosphamide, Methotrexate and Fluorouracil
CMF is a combination of three medicines:
CMF has been found to be effective for both node-negative disease that hasn’t traveled to lymph nodes and node-positive disease that has spread to lymph nodes. It is used as adjuvant therapy, after surgery, for early-stage breast cancer.
You and your doctor will discuss the best chemotherapy treatment for your situation.
CMF can be given three different ways:
- All three medicines together, by vein, on the first day of treatment, followed by a 3-week rest period.
- This cycle is usually repeated 4 to 6 times over 3 to 6 months.
- Cyclophosphamide by mouth as a daily pill for 14 days
- Methotrexate and flourouracil together, by vein, on days 1 and 8 of that 2-week period.
- When you finish your cyclophosphamide pills, you’ll have a 2-week rest period.
- This 4-week cycle is usually repeated 4 to 6 times for a total of 3 to 6 months.
- All three medicines together, by vein, on the first day of treatment.
- This is repeated one week later and followed by a 3-week rest period.
- This cycle is usually repeated 4 to 6 times for a total of 3 to 6 months.
- Low blood counts (including white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets)
- Risk of infection
- Bruising or bleeding
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Mouth sores
- Eye problems
- Bladder irritation
- Hair loss
- Menopausal symptoms
Less common side effects include:
Before starting CMF, be sure to tell your doctor about any medicines you are taking—including vitamins, herbal supplements and over-the-counter medicines—to make sure they won’t interfere with your chemotherapy treatment.
You will need a blood test before you start treatment. Contact your doctor right away if you develop a fever or other symptoms of an infection such as a sore throat, cough or diarrhea.
You should avoid becoming pregnant while you are receiving CMF. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant or may be pregnant while you are getting treatment.