How to use Hycamtin
Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily for 5 days. Each 5-day treatment period is called a cycle. You will usually repeat this cycle every 21 days. The dosage is based on your body size, medical condition, lab tests, and response to treatment.
Swallow the capsules whole. Do not open, crush, or chew the capsules. If the capsule contents touch your skin, wash the skin right away and completely with soap and water. If the contents get into your eyes, mouth, or nose, flush right away with water for at least 15 minutes. Consult your doctor if you have redness/burning/swelling on the area of skin the contents touched or if the contents get into your eyes.
If you vomit after taking a dose, do not take another dose at that time. Take your next dose on your usual dosing schedule.
All people should wash their hands carefully after handling this drug. Women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant should not handle this medication.
See also Warning section.
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, tiredness, loss of appetite, weakness, and fever may occur. If these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Nausea and vomiting can be severe. In some cases, your doctor may prescribe medication to prevent or relieve nausea and vomiting. Eating several small meals, not eating before treatment, or limiting activity may help lessen some of these effects.
Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your doctor has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Topotecan decreases bone marrow function. This effect may lead to a low number of blood cells such as red cells, white cells, and platelets. A low number of blood cells can cause anemia, decrease your body's ability to fight an infection, or cause your body to bruise or bleed more easily. Tell your doctor right away if you develop any of the following symptoms: unusual tiredness, pale skin, signs of infection (such as sore throat that doesn't go away, fever, chills), easy bruising/bleeding.
Your doctor will order frequent blood tests to monitor your bone marrow function while you are taking this medication. Keep all medical and lab appointments.
Before using topotecan, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This drug may make you feel weak or tired. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more tired. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).
Topotecan can make you more likely to get infections or may make current infections worse. Stay away from anyone who has an infection that may easily spread (such as chickenpox, COVID-19, measles, flu). Talk to your doctor if you have been exposed to an infection or for more details.
Tell your health care professional that you are using topotecan before having any immunizations/vaccinations. Avoid contact with people who have recently received live vaccines (such as flu vaccine inhaled through the nose).
To lower the chance of getting cut, bruised, or injured, use caution with sharp objects like razors and nail cutters, and avoid activities such as contact sports.
This medication can affect fertility in both males and females. Ask your doctor for more details.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should not become pregnant while using topotecan. Topotecan may harm an unborn baby. Women using this medication should ask about reliable forms of birth control during treatment and for 6 months after the last dose. Men using this medication should ask about reliable forms of birth control during treatment and for 3 months after the last dose. If you or your partner becomes pregnant, talk to your doctor right away about the risks and benefits of this medication.
It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the possible risk to the infant, breastfeeding is not recommended while using this drug and for 1 week after the last dose. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Other medications can affect the removal of topotecan from your body, which may affect how topotecan works. Examples include azole antifungals (such as ketoconazole), cyclosporine, macrolide antibiotics (such as erythromycin), ritonavir, among others.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
If you miss a dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.