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What condition does Etoposide treat?

Etoposide is used alone or along with other medications to treat certain forms of lung cancer such as small cell lung cancer. It is a type of cancer that most commonly arises within the lung. This medication helps to slow the development of cancer cells.

Etoposide belongs to the group of medications called cytostatic. This medication comes as a capsule for oral use. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this medication.

How does Etoposide work?

Etoposide works by blocking the action of an enzyme in cells called topoisomerase. It is needed for cell replication and tumor growth. Cells need this enzyme to keep their DNA in the proper shape when they are dividing. Blocking this enzyme leads to breaks in the DNA, which leads to cancer cell death.

What is the recommended dosage for Etoposide?

This medicine comes as a capsule to be taken by mouth. It is usually taken once a day for 4 or 5 days in a row. This cycle may be repeated once every 3 to 4 weeks, depending on your response to the medication. The length of treatment depends on the types of medications you are taking, the type of cancer you have, and how well your body responds to them. Take this medicine at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully and ask your doctor to explain any part you do not understand. Take this medicine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

What are the side effects of Etoposide?

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Temporary hair loss
  • Constipation
  • Unusual or unpleasant taste in your mouth
  • Numbness or tingly feeling
  • Mild itching
  • Skin rash

What are the precautions in taking Etoposide?

  • While using this medication, avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice. Unless your doctor says you may do so safely. It may affect how the drug works in your body.
  • Let your doctor know if you are allergic to the drug. This may have an inactive ingredient that can cause an allergic reaction.
  • Inform your doctor if you have any medical history. Tell also your doctor if you have current medications or treatments.
  • Do not share this with others who have the same symptoms as yours.
  • If you missed a dose, call your doctor right away to obtain a new dosing schedule.
  • Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney disease.
  • Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
  • This treatment can make you more likely to get infections or may worsen any current infections. Consequently, wash your hands well to prevent the spread of infection. Avoid contact with people who have infections that may spread to others. Consult your doctor if you have been exposed to an infection or for more details.
  • Keep this in a dry and clean place to avoid contaminations.