Gefitinib


Gefitinibb Treatment
Side Effects Research and Resources

Side Effects

Side Effects

Gefitinib, otherwise known as Iressa, is used to treat small cell lung cancer and is being studied for use against other types of cancer. (It is sometimes given for other kinds of cancer "off-label".) It is a tyrosine kinase inhibitor and targets the epidermal growth factor receptor on the surface of some cells in the body. Gefitinib blocks these receptors from essentially telling the cell to grow and divide. It is FDA approved but it is only available to people who have already been exposed to Gefitinib. It is taken by the mouth in 250 mg tablets once a day. It works best when taken at the same time and cannot be doubled.

When taking Gefitinib you should tell your doctor if you are allergic to any medicine, additives, dyes, or foods. If you have any type of liver disease or any other medical conditions, you should let your doctor know. If you are pregnant, breast feeding, or taking any other medications or blood thinning medications, your doctor needs to be aware.

Gefitinib may interact with other drugs or supplements, causing its level to either rise or lessen in your blood. If you are taking rifampin, pherytoin, Phenobarbital, St. John's Wort, Carbamezapine, Itraconazole, Keto Conazole, Nefazodone, Clarithromycin, cimetidine, ranitidine, metropolol, ritonavir, or other drugs for GIV or Aids, you need to let your doctor know immediately. In addition, grapefruit or grapefruit juice may also change the level of this medication in your blood. Gefitinib can also affect your body's ability to form blood clots in order to stop bleeding, which may in turn double if you are taking any other medicine that can affect your ability to stop bleeding. Warn your doctor if you are taking aspirin, warfarin, clopidogrel, ticlopidine, or Vitamin E.

Gefitinib may cause a rash on the face and neck but will go away after the first two weeks of treatment. In some cases, the rash may be extreme and you should reduce your exposure to the sun, as it makes the rash worse. Rashes are common side effects of EGFR inhibitors. Hives and swelling are less common side effects.

Muscle weakness and soreness are possible side effects, as are mouth sores. This drug may cause diarrhea and can lead to chemical imbalances in your body. You may want to be prescribed medication to help against this. It may also increase liver enzyme levels in your blood, so you will likely have to do blood tests. You may also develop lung disease and changes in your vision. Let your doctor know if you experience shortness of breath, coughing, or eye irritation. It is possible to develop severe lung disease. Food shouldn't affect the medication. Be sure to ask your doctor for more information.

Gefitinib has proven cancer-fighting ability, even though it works better for some people than others. Even though it has side effects such as the thinning of blood, diarrhea, and rashes, oncologists often feel the benefits outweigh the downsides

 

Gefitinibb Treatment
Side Effects Research and Resources

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