Alert

etoposide (injection)

Pronunciation: ee TOE poe side

Brand: Toposar

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

Etoposide can weaken (suppress) your immune system, and you may get an infection or bleed more easily. Call your doctor if you have unusual bruising or bleeding, or signs of infection (such as fever, sore throat, cough, or trouble breathing).

What is etoposide?

Etoposide is used to treat cancer of the lung or testicles. It is usually given with other cancer medicines in a combination chemotherapy.

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

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving etoposide?

You should not be treated with etoposide if you are allergic to it.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had kidney disease.

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

Etoposide can harm an unborn baby or cause birth defects if the mother or the father is using this medicine.

  • If you are a woman, do not use etoposide if you are pregnant. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine and for at least 6 months after your last dose.
  • If you are a man, use effective birth control if your sex partner is able to get pregnant. Keep using birth control for at least 4 months after your last dose.
  • Tell your doctor right away if a pregnancy occurs while either the mother or the father is using etoposide.

This medicine may affect fertility (ability to have children) in both men and women. However, it is important to use birth control to prevent pregnancy because etoposide can harm an unborn baby.

You should not breast-feed while you are using etoposide.

How is etoposide given?

Etoposide is given as an infusion into a vein. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

Etoposide is usually given as part of a 4-day or 5-day treatment cycle every 3 or 4 weeks. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Etoposide can be harmful if it gets on your skin. If skin contact occurs, wash the area with soap and water.

Etoposide can increase your risk of bleeding or infection. You will need frequent medical tests. Your cancer treatments may be delayed based on the results.

What happens if I miss a dose?

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

What happens if I overdose?

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

What should I avoid while receiving etoposide?

Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using etoposide. The vaccine may not work as well during this time, and may not fully protect you from disease. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), rotavirus, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), zoster (shingles), and nasal flu (influenza) 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.

This medicine can pass into body fluids (urine, feces, vomit). For at least 48 hours after you receive a dose, avoid allowing your body fluids to come into contact with your hands or other surfaces. Caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up a patient's body fluids, handling contaminated trash or laundry or changing diapers. Wash hands before and after removing gloves. Wash soiled clothing and linens separately from other laundry.

What are the side effects of etoposide?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash with blistering and peeling).

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • low white blood cell counts --fever, mouth sores, skin sores, sore throat, cough, trouble breathing;
  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding, purple or red spots under your skin;
  • severe ongoing nausea or vomiting;
  • sudden chest pain, wheezing, dry cough, feeling short of breath;
  • upper stomach pain, loss of appetite;
  • vision problems; or
  • a seizure (convulsions).

Common side effects may include:

  • low white blood cell counts.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect etoposide?

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:

  • warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven).

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect etoposide, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about etoposide.

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.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2019 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.01. Revision date: 5/17/2019.

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