A trial looking at weekly versus 3 weekly paclitaxel for breast cancer that has spread (Will Weekly Win)

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Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.

Cancer type:

Breast cancer




Phase 3

This trial wants to find out if it it best for people with breast cancer to have paclitaxel (Taxol chemotherapy) every week or every 3 weeks.

Chemotherapy is commonly used for breast cancer that has spread (metastasised) or breast cancer that has come back (recurred) after treatment. One of the chemotherapy drugs used is paclitaxel. It is usually given once every 3 weeks.

The people in this trial will either have paclitaxel every week or paclitaxel every 3 weeks. The results of both treatment groups will be compared to find out which is better at stopping the cancer from coming back.

Who can enter

You can enter this trial if you

  • Have been diagnosed with breast cancer that has either spread locally or to another part of the body
  • Have been treated with an ‘anthracycline’ drug (such as doxorubicin or epirubicin)
  • Are willing to stop taking any immunotherapy you have been prescribed while you are taking part in the trial, apart from Herceptin (trastuzumab)
  • Are willing to stop taking any hormone therapy you have been prescribed while you are taking part in the trial
  • Are between the ages of 18 and 80
  • Are well enough to have chemotherapy
  • Have satisfactory blood tests

You cannot enter this trial if you

  • Have had taxane chemotherapy before - paclitaxel (Taxol) or docetaxel (Taxotere) for example
  • Have had radiotherapy in the last 3 months
  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Have had cancer before (apart from non melanoma skin cancer or carcinoma in situ of the cervix which was treated effectively at least 5 years ago)
  • Have any other serious medical condition
  • Have taken part in any other clinical trial in the last month
  • Have neuropathy (nerve damage)

Trial design

This is a randomised trial. There are 2 groups. The people taking part are put into a group by a computer. It will recruit about 600 people.

The people in group 1 will have Taxol chemotherapy every 3 weeks a total of 6 times. It will be given through a drip into a vein over 3 hours.

The people in group 2 will have Taxol chemotherapy every week a maximum of 12 times. It will be given though a drip into a vein over 1 hour.

Hospital visits

You will need to visit the hospital and have some tests before you can take part in this trial. These include blood tests and a physical examination, and either a chest X-ray, an MRI scan or a CT scan. The doctors may also ask you to have a bone scan.

The blood tests will be repeated before every dose of chemotherapy. If you had an MRI scan, a CT scan or chest X-ray before you started the trial, this will be repeated every 6 weeks. These scans will be compared to those taken at the beginning of the trial to see if there is any change.

You will also be asked to fill out a questionnaire before you start the treatment, and 9, 18 and 27 weeks and 1 year after you start. This will ask you how you have been feeling. It is called a ‘quality of life’ study. The forms will be sent to you in the post.

Side effects

As with all treatments, Taxol has some side effects. The most common side effects are

There is more information about the side effects of Taxol on CancerHelp UK.

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr Mark Verrill

Supported by

Anglo Celtic Cooperative Oncology Group
Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

Oracle 46

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Deborah wanted to help other breast cancer patients in the future

A picture of Deborah

“Deborah agreed to take part in a trial as she was keen to help other cancer patients in the future. "If taking part in a trial means others might be helped then I’m very happy with that."

Last reviewed:

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