Tecentriq®

(atezolizumab)

Pronounced Tee-sen-trick

Tecentriq, also known as atezolizumab, is a treatment for advanced triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) and is used in combination with chemotherapy.

Ask your doctor if Tecentriq is right for you. 

How Tecentriq works 

Tecentriq is an immunotherapy which works with your body’s own immune system to fight cancer cells. Tecentriq is not the same as chemotherapy.

Tecentriq works by attaching to a protein in your body, called PD-L1, which is found on some tumour cells. When this happens Tecentriq helps the immune system to better identify the cancer cells and kill them. 

To learn more about how Tecentriq works, things to consider before starting treatment and what to expect during treatment including side effects, download the following resources:

Clinical trial data

The key clinical study in patients with advanced TNBC compared the combination of Tecentriq plus chemotherapy with chemotherapy alone.  The Tecentriq arm showed improved survival benefits for patients compared to those who had chemotherapy alone.   

Your doctor will discuss this with you when considering treatment with Tecentriq.         

Ask your doctor if Tecentriq is right for you.   

How to access Tecentriq

Tecentriq for advanced triple negative breast cancer is not funded by PHARMAC.  This means you will need to pay for it privately. 

If you have health insurance, carefully check what’s covered — every health insurance provider has different rules and benefits that cover cancer treatment, surgery, tests and appointments.

Roche also offer support through a Cost Share Programme.

The Tecentriq Cost Share Programme
• offers assistance with the cost of your medicine. The total amount you will pay for Tecentriq is capped.
• once a patient has reached the cap, Roche will provide ongoing Tecentriq at no cost. However, other costs such as doctor fees and administration costs will still apply.
• for more information on the Tecentriq Cost Share Programme, talk to your doctor.

Ready to take the next step?

Making decisions about treatment options involves working through the advantages and disadvantages, so you can decide what may work best for you and your loved ones. 

Because every situation is different, it’s important to speak to your doctor to find out if Tecentriq is right for you.

Talking to your doctor about Tecentriq

To help you in this process, we’ve put together a discussion guide to help you begin a conversation with your doctor. Print it off, take it along to your next appointment, and take notes in the spaces provided.

For further information about private treatment providers click here.

You can also talk to your current doctor about referral to a private doctor or treatment centre.

To learn more about how medicines become available in New Zealand, click here.

Handy resources

The following resources contain useful information on Tecentriq such as what it is for, things to consider before starting treatment and what to expect during treatment including side effects.  

Tecentriq® (atezolizumab) 1200mg/20mL is a Prescription Medicine used for advanced or metastatic (spreading) non-small cell lung cancer, metastatic non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer, extensive stage small-cell lung cancer, advanced or metastatic urothelial (bladder and urinary system) cancer and advanced or metastatic triple negative breast cancer.

Tell your doctor if: you have immune system problems such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or lupus; you have inflammation of the lungs (pneumonitis); you have liver problems, such as hepatitis; you have thyroid problems; you are taking other medicines; you are pregnant or breastfeeding or plan to become pregnant or breastfeed. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment with Tecentriq.

Tell your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following signs and symptoms:

inflammation of the lungs (new or worsening cough, shortness of breath and chest pain); inflammation of the liver (yellowing of skin or eyes, nausea, vomiting, bleeding or bruising, dark urine, and stomach pain); inflammation of the intestines (diarrhoea, blood in stools, and stomach pain); inflammation of the thyroid, pituitary and adrenal glands (tiredness, weight loss, weight gain, changes in mood or behaviour, visual disturbances, increased sensitivity to cold or heat, slow or rapid heart rate, hair loss, constipation, headache, and dizziness); type 1 diabetes mellitus (feeling more hungry or thirsty than usual, need to urinate more often, weight loss, and feeling tired); inflammation of the brain or spinal cord (neck stiffness, headache, fever, chills, vomiting, eye sensitivity to light, confusion and sleepiness); inflammation of the nerves (muscle weakness, numbness or tingling in hands and feet); inflammation of the pancreas (abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting); inflammation of the heart muscle (shortness of breath, feeling tired, irregular heart beat or chest pain); inflammation of the kidneys (dark and/or frothy urine, high blood pressure, swelling to face, feet, legs and hands; inflammation of muscles (muscle pain or stiffness or skin rash); infusion reactions (fever, chills, shortness of breath and flushing).

Possible common side effects may also include: loss of appetite; diarrhoea; shortness of breath; itching of the skin; nausea; fever; rash; chills; vomiting; difficulty swallowing; flu-like symptoms; nasal congestion; cough; sore throat; tiredness; common cold; headaches; being short of breath when exercising; stomach or back pain; urinary tract infection, dizziness, light-headedness, looking pale; bleeding or bruising; mouth ulcers and/or cold sores; constipation; increase in infections; pain in the muscles and bones; joint pain; numbness or weakness of the arms and legs; tingling or loss of feeling.

Tecentriq has risks and benefits. Ask your doctor if Tecentriq is right for you. Use strictly as directed. If symptoms continue or you have side effects, see your healthcare professional. For further information on Tecentriq, please talk to your health professional or visit www.medsafe.govt.nzfor Tecentriq Consumer Medicine Information.

Tecentriq is not funded by PHARMAC. You will need to pay the full cost of this medicine. A prescription charge and normal oncologist fees may apply.

Consumer Panel dated 27 May 2019.