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Temozolomide

INFORMATION

Uses

Temozolomide is used in the treatment of brain tumor.

How it works

Temozolomide is an antitumor drug and belongs to a class of medications called alkylating agents. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells in the body.

Common side effects

Nausea, Pale colored skin, Altered vision, Memory impairment, Confusion, Constipation, Diarrhoea, Dizziness, Fainting, Fever, Hair loss, Headache, Insomnia, Loss of appetite, Balance disorder (loss of balance), Coordination impaired, Sore mouth, Sore throat, Vomiting, Weakness

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Expert advice

  • Swallow full tablets on an empty stomach, one hour before your meal.
  • Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Consult your doctor if you develop symptoms of opportunistic infections (such as Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia) and reactivation of infections (such as hepatitis B virus) Using temozolomide may increase your risk of developing certain types of bone marrow cancer. Be aware about your specific risk.
  • You may be given medication to prevent nausea or other side effects while you are receiving temozolomide.
  • Your blood will be tested frequently during treatment to monitor the side effects of temozolomide on your blood cells as you may have a small risk of other changes in blood cells, including leukemia.
  • Avoid activities that may increase your risk of bleeding or injury. Use extra care to prevent bleeding while shaving or brushing your teeth.
  • Do not drink alcohol while taking temozolomide.
  • Do not drive or operate machinery while using temozolomide as it may make you tired or sleepy.
  • Both male and female patients should take effective contraceptive precautions during and after 6 months of treatment. Male patients should seek advice on conservation of sperm prior to treatment as temozolomide treatment may cause infertility.

Frequently asked questions

Temozolomide

Q.What is temozolomide used for/ what does temozolomide treat/ Is temozolomide chemotherapy/ is temozolomide cytotoxic/ is temozolomide a radiosensitizer?
Temozolomide is an anti-cancer (antineoplastic or cytotoxic) chemotherapy drug. It is used to treat specific types of brain tumor. It is a radiosensitizer

Q.Is temozolomide effective/ does temozolomide work?
Temozolomide is effective and works for patients if taken at recommended dosage and duration as recommended by the doctor

Q.How is temozolomide given/administered/ metabolized/ how long does temozolomide stay in the body?
Temozolomide is given as a capsule and is taken by mouth. It should be administered in the fasting state, at least one hour before meal. It is rapidly metabolized at physiologic pH to the active monomethyl triazenoimidazole carboxamide (MTIC). The half-life (t1/2) in plasma is approximately 1.8 hours

Q.How does temozolomide cross the blood-brain barrier?
Temozolomide because of its small size and lipophilic properties is able to cross the blood-brain barrier rapidly and is present in the cerebrospinal fluid

Q.Does temozolomide cause hair loss?
Hair loss is a side effect of using temozolomide. Always follow doctor's advice regarding its use

Q.Is temozolomide FDA approved?
Temozolomide is a FDA approved drug.


Content on this page was last updated on 18 November, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)