Tykerb (lapatinib) is a brand-name prescription medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Tykerb to treat:

Tykerb comes as an oral tablet. It belongs to a class of drugs known as tyrosine kinase inhibitors. There is currently no generic form of Tykerb available.

Dosage summary

The following chart summarizes Tykerb’s dosage.

ConditionTykerb dosage
HER2+ breast cancer that’s advanced or metastatic1,250 mg (five tablets) once daily
HER2+ breast cancer that’s HR+ and metastatic1,500 mg (six tablets) once daily

For information about the dosage of Tykerb, including its strength and how to take the drug, keep reading. For a comprehensive look at Tykerb, including details about its uses and limitations, see this article.

This article describes typical dosages for Tykerb provided by the drug’s manufacturer. When taking Tykerb, always follow the dosage prescribed by your doctor.

Below is important information about Tykerb’s dosage for its approved uses.

Tykerb dosage form

Tykerb comes as an oral tablet.

Tykerb dosage strength

Tykerb comes in a strength of 250 milligrams (mg).

Typical dosages

Typically, your dosage will depend on the specific type of breast cancer you’re taking Tykerb for. It also depends on what other medications your doctor prescribes with Tykerb. Your doctor may adjust your dosage over time if you develop side effects.

The following information describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. However, be sure to take the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for HER2+ breast cancer that’s advanced or metastatic

The recommended dosage of Tykerb for HER2+ breast cancer that’s advanced or metastatic is 1,250 mg once daily. This consists of five 250-mg tablets taken once per day. You’ll take this dosage on days 1 to 21 of your treatment cycle.

On Days 1 to 14, you’ll also take the chemotherapy drug capecitabine (Xeloda) with Tykerb. You’ll typically take capecitabine in two daily doses, 12 hours apart.

You’ll repeat this 21-day treatment cycle for as long as Tykerb is safe and effective for you.

Dosage for HER2+ breast cancer that’s HR+ and metastatic

The recommended dosage of Tykerb for HER2+ breast cancer that’s hormone receptor-positive (HR+) and metastatic is 1,500 mg once daily. This consists of six 250-mg tablets taken once per day.

For this use, you’ll take Tykerb along with letrozole (Femara), which you’ll also take once per day.

Long-term treatment

Tykerb is meant to be a long-term treatment. You’ll continue taking Tykerb as long as it is safe and effective.

The Tykerb dosage your doctor prescribes will depend on several factors. These include:

Other medical conditions you have can also affect your Tykerb dosage.

Dosage adjustments

If you have liver problems, your doctor will likely prescribe a lower starting dosage of Tykerb than usual. This is because Tykerb has a boxed warning about the risk of liver damage. This is a serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). See “FDA warning” at the top of this article for details.

Be sure to talk with your doctor about any liver problems you have before starting Tykerb treatment.

Your doctor may prescribe a lower dosage of Tykerb if:

  • you have a heart problem called decreased left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), or
  • you take certain drugs known as CYP3A4 inhibitors

Also, if you take drugs known as CYP3A4 inducers, your doctor may prescribe a higher dosage of Tykerb than usual.

Be sure to talk with your doctor about all of the medications you take before starting Tykerb treatment.

You should take Tykerb once per day, 1 hour before or after a meal. You’ll take all of the tablets for your daily Tykerb dose at one time. If you’re taking Tykerb with capecitabine (Xeloda), you should take capecitabine within 30 minutes after eating a meal.

Swallow Tykerb tablets whole. Don’t crush, chew, or break them in half. And, you should avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while taking Tykerb.

It may be helpful to take Tykerb around the same time of day. This helps maintain a steady level of the drug in your body so Tykerb can work effectively.

If you have trouble swallowing tablets, see this article for tips on how to take this form of medication. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Accessible drug labels and containers

If you’re having trouble reading your prescription label, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. Some pharmacies offer labels with large print, braille, or a code you scan with a smartphone to convert text to speech. If your local pharmacy doesn’t have these options, your doctor or pharmacist might be able to recommend a pharmacy that does.

If you’re having trouble opening medication bottles, ask your pharmacist about putting Tykerb in an easy-open container. They also may recommend tools that can make it easier to open bottles.

If you miss a dose of Tykerb, skip it and take your next dose at your regular time the next day. Do not double up on doses.

To help make sure that you don’t miss a dose, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or using a timer. You could also download a reminder app on your phone.

If you take more Tykerb than your doctor prescribes, you may develop serious side effects.

It’s important that you don’t take more Tykerb than your doctor advises.

Symptoms of an overdose

Overdose symptoms of Tykerb can include:

If you take more than the recommended amount of Tykerb

Call your doctor right away if you believe you’ve taken too much Tykerb. Another option is to call the American Association of Poison Control Centers at 800-222-1222 or use its online tool. If you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number, or go to the nearest emergency room.

The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Tykerb for you, they will prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. Always follow the dosage that your doctor prescribes for you.

As with any drug, never change your dosage of Tykerb without your doctor’s recommendation. If you have questions about the dosage of Tykerb that’s right for you, talk with your doctor.

Besides learning about dosage, you may want other information about Tykerb. These additional articles might be helpful to you:

Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.