Side Effects I’ve Experienced with Talquetamab

This is a list of most of the side effects I’ve had since I started talquetamab.  The most surprising and disappointing problem I’ve encountered is the loss of my sense of taste.

Dry mouth. This is so bad that at times my teeth stick to the inside of my mouth. It’s not always that bad though.

My sense of taste is altered or absent.  A dill pickle tasted like nothing to me.  I could smell the dill, but the experience of eating the pickle was totally unsatisfying. It was like a crispy water snack.  Vanilla ice cream tasted like salt. I had a hot dog with mustard on it, but couldn’t taste the mustard at all.  The hot dog had a muted flavor. There are very few things that taste like much of anything. I still drink coffee every morning.  I’ve made it excessively strong, to see if I can detect more flavor, but that hasn’t helped.  The coffee smells great, but tastes like hot water with 2 teaspoons of sugar in it.  Yum.

Swallowing problems. I have trouble swallowing most foods.  I have to keep a full bottle or glass of water nearby to wash things down with.  If I try to swallow without the help of water, I cough or choke a little.  Most things get stuck in my throat. We believe this is a result of the dry mouth/effect of the drug on the salivary glands.

Nail/skin changes
My nails are separating from the nail beds, which is painful.  The skin on my fingers and hands is peeling.

Heat sensitivity
I’ve been experiencing pins & needles on my head, neck and torso when it’s too warm. My face gets flushed.  My internal temperature rises a bit. This happens if I’m outdoors and the outdoor temperature is in the upper 70s or higher.  It also happens if I’m exerting myself in any way. Including doing such simple things as folding laundry. The only remedy I have is to rest immediately and try to reduce the temperature in my environment.

Acute pancreatitis
Treatment was withheld this week for this reason. This is still under investigation.

International Myeloma Foundation

The IMF has a good video describing some of the data from a phase I trial of talquetamab as a single agent:



  1. Tom

    I’ve experienced ALL the side effects that Beth has reported. I had some really severe skin & nail problems. I can share photos if you’re interested (not sure if I can post pix to this blog, though…) I’ve been getting treatment at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville.


  2. Matt

    Hi Beth,
    I’m just starting full dosing this week a d already have the dry mouth and loss of taste. Thanks for sharing because my care team knew nothing about these side effects.

    Did your side effects lessen after time? (Taste return?)

    Good luck!

  3. Christi

    Thank you for posting this. My husband is currently in this trail. He is experiencing peeling skin on the hand, dry mouth, and loss of taste. Can I ask how long these symptoms lasted for you?
    Thank you

  4. Walter

    Hi Beth,

    I am embarking on this trial at the end of the month. I will be in the hospital for 9 days while the doctor steps up the dosage in measured increments before the target dose is reached. It was very helpful reading your blog, how are you doing now?


  5. Oliver

    Thank you for sharing this information. My mother has been in a talquetamab trial about 2 months now and has also experienced loss of taste and also loss of smell, dry mouth, swallowing difficulty, peeling skin and swollen feet and lower legs. However it has so farbeen very effective in reducing her M-protein levels.

  6. Bill Kincaid

    Thanks, I have been asked to participate in this trial and have never heard of this drug. Your insights are very helpful.


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