doxorubicin

doxorubicin

Pronunciation: DOX oh ROO bi sin

Brand: Adriamycin

What is the most important information I should know about doxorubicin?

Multum donot

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to doxorubicin or similar medications (Cerubidine, Ellence, Idamycin, Novantrone), or if you have an untreated or uncontrolled infection, severe liver disease, severe heart problems, or if you have recently had a heart attack.

Multum emt

Doxorubicin can have serious side effects on your heart. Before you are treated with doxorubicin, tell your doctor if you have a history of heart disease, heart rhythm disorder, congestive heart failure, or heart attack.

Also tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially about any other cancer medications or treatments you have received (including radiation).

Multum nopreg

Do not use doxorubicin if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby.

Multum emt

Doxorubicin can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections. Your blood may need to be tested often. Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Avoid activities that may increase your risk of bleeding injury. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

Multum donot

Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using doxorubicin, or you could develop a serious infection.

Using doxorubicin may increase your risk of developing other types of cancer, such as leukemia. Talk with your doctor about your specific risk.

What is doxorubicin?

Doxorubicin is a cancer medication that interferes with the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body.

Doxorubicin is used to treat different types of cancers that affect the breast, bladder, ovary, thyroid, stomach, lungs, bones, nerve tissues, bones, muscles, joints, and soft tissues. Doxorubicin is also used to treat Hodgkin's disease and certain types of leukemia.

Doxorubicin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking doxorubicin?

Multum emt

Before you are treated with doxorubicin, tell your doctor about all other cancer medications and treatments you have received, including radiation.

Multum donot

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to doxorubicin or similar medications (Cerubidine, Ellence, Idamycin, Novantrone), or if you have:

  • an untreated or uncontrolled infection (including mouth sores);
  • severe liver disease;
  • severe heart problems; or
  • if you have recently had a heart attack.

To make sure you can safely receive doxorubicin, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • liver or kidney disease;
  • a weak immune system caused by prior cancer treatments;
  • heart disease, a heart rhythm disorder, congestive heart failure; or
  • if you have ever had a heart attack.
Multum emt

Using doxorubicin may increase your risk of developing other types of cancer, such as leukemia. Talk with your doctor about your specific risk.

Multum nopreg

FDA pregnancy category D. Do not use doxorubicin if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Use birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are receiving doxorubicin.

Multum nobrfeed

Doxorubicin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while you are using doxorubicin.

How should I take doxorubicin?

Doxorubicin is injected into a vein through an IV. You will receive this injection in a clinic or hospital setting.

Doxorubicin is sometimes given together with other cancer medications. You may be given other medications to prevent nausea, vomiting, or infections.

Tell your caregivers if you feel any burning, pain, or swelling around the IV needle when doxorubicin is injected.

If any of this medication accidentally gets on your skin, wash it thoroughly with soap and warm water.

Multum emt

Doxorubicin can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections. Your blood will need to be tested often. Your cancer treatments may be delayed based on the results of these tests. Visit your doctor regularly.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your doxorubicin injection.

What happens if I overdose?

Multum emt

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include severe forms of some of the side effects listed in this medication guide.

What should I avoid while taking doxorubicin?

Multum donot

Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using doxorubicin, or you could develop a serious infection. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG), oral polio, rotavirus, smallpox, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), H1N1 influenza, and nasal flu vaccine.

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

Avoid activities that may increase your risk of bleeding or injury. Use extra care to prevent bleeding while shaving or brushing your teeth.

What are the possible side effects of doxorubicin?

Multum emt

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Multum donot

Tell your caregivers at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • pain, burning, irritation, or skin changes where the injection was given;
  • feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion;
  • swelling, rapid weight gain (especially in your face and midsection);
  • nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
  • fast, slow, or uneven heartbeats;
  • anxiety, sweating, severe shortness of breath, wheezing, gasping for breath;
  • chest pain, sudden cough, cough with foamy mucus, rapid breathing, coughing up blood;
  • nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
  • lower back pain, blood in your urine, urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • numbness or tingly feeling around your mouth, weak pulse, overactive reflexes, confusion, fainting;
  • muscle weakness, tightness, or contraction;
  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms, sores in your mouth and throat;
  • pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating; or
  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • missed menstrual periods;
  • darkening of your skin or nails;
  • temporary hair loss;
  • feeling weak or tired;
  • mild nausea, diarrhea; or
  • eye redness, puffy eyelids.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect doxorubicin?

Many drugs can interact with doxorubicin. Below is just a partial list. Tell your doctor if you are using:

  • acetaminophen (Tylenol);
  • an antibiotic or antifungal medication;
  • auranofin (Ridaura) or gold injections to treat arthritis;
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune);
  • dexrazoxane (Totect, Zinecard);
  • progesterone (Prometrium);
  • rosiglitazone (Avandia, Avandamet, Avandaryl);
  • an antidepressant such as amitriptyline (Elavil, Vanatrip, Limbitrol), doxepin (Sinequan, Silenor), nortriptyline (Pamelor), and others;
  • birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy;
  • cholesterol medications such as atorvastatin (Lipitor, Caduet), simvastatin (Zocor, Simcor, Vytorin), and others;
  • drugs that weaken your immune system, such as adalimumab (Humira), certolizumab (Cimzia), clozapine (Clozaril, FazaClo), etanercept (Enbrel), golimumab (Simponi), infliximab (Remicade), and others;
  • heart rhythm or blood pressure medicine such as amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), benazepril (Lotensin), disopyramide (Norpace), dofetilide (Tikosyn), dronedarone (Multaq), enalapril (Vasotec), labetalol (Normodyne, Trandate), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), methyldopa (Aldomet), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan, Tarka), and others;
  • HIV/AIDS medications;
  • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), and others;
  • other cancer medications, especially cyclophosphamide Cytoxan, Cytoxan Lyophilized, Neosar), cytarabine (Cytosar, DepoCyt, Tarabine), etoposide (Etopophos, VePesid), paclitaxel (Taxol, Onxol), sorafenib (Nexavar); or
  • seizure medications such as carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol), felbamate (Felbatol), divalproex (Depakote), phenobarbital (Solfoton), phenytoin (Dilantin), valproic acid (Depakene, Stavzor).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with doxorubicin. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about doxorubicin.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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