The authors evaluated the activity and toxicity of docetaxel given as a 1-hour infusion every 21 days in patients with unresectable cholangiocarcinoma. Seventeen patients with cytologically or histologically confirmed cholangiocarcinoma received intravenous docetaxel over 1 hour, repeated every 21 days. The initial dose of docetaxel was 100 mg/m2, with a subsequent 25% dose reduction for patients experiencing grade 3 or 4 toxicities. Treatment was continued until disease progression or occurrence of intolerable side effects. All patients received premedication with dexamethasone 8 mg by mouth twice daily for 5 days, starting 1 day before docetaxel infusion. Sixteen of the 17 patients were assessable for response and toxicity; one patient was removed from the trial for intercurrent illness. Thirty-eight cycles of docetaxel were delivered (median, two cycles). No complete or partial responses were noted. Fourteen patients had progressive disease, one patient had stable disease, and one patient died of septic shock shortly after starting treatment. Granulocytopenia was the dose-limiting toxicity. Thirteen patients had grade 4 granulocytopenia, 11 of whom required antibiotics for neutropenic fever. Granulocytopenia was the only grade 4 toxicity observed. Grade 3 toxicities included stomatitis, anemia, fatigue, vomiting, and hypotension. Grade 1 or 2 toxicities included alopecia, diarrhea, peripheral edema, myalgias, and anorexia. Administered on this dose and schedule, docetaxel lacked activity in patients with cholangiocarcinoma. The toxicity profile, including dose-limiting granulocytopenia, has been previously described in patients receiving docetaxel.