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Vinorelbine is used alone or in combination in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer and advanced breast cancer which is non-responsive to other medication.

How it works

Vinorelbine is a cytotoxic drug that belongs to a class of medications called vinca-alkaloids. It kills rapidly dividing cells (e.g. cancer cells) thus slowing down the spread of cancer in the body.

Common side effects

Chills, Constipation, Running nose, Cough, Diarrhoea, Dizziness, Altered taste, Difficulty in swallowing, Easting disorder, Fatigue, Weakness, Headache, Increased sweating, Itching, Jaw pain, Loss of appetite, Mouth inflammation, Mouth ulcer, Gastrointestinal inflammation, Nausea, Sleepiness, Stomach pain, Viral infection, Vomiting, Weight loss


Expert advice

  • Inform your doctor if you have a history of heart problems, vascular problems or low production of blood cells from the bone marrow (myelosupression); liver problems or have had radiotherapy around the liver.
  • Do not take live or attenuated vaccines during therapy and avoid contact with people who receive them.
  • Use two methods of contraception while on this therapy and 3 months after it to avoid pregnancy.
  • Men should not father a child while on this therapy and 3 months post it. They should also seek guidance and counselling on sperm conservation before taking this therapy.
  • Avoid contact with skin, eyes or mucosa as vinorelbine may cause irritation. Thoroughly wash the skin area, in case of skin contact with the medicine.
  • Take vinorelbine preferably with a light meal to reduce nausea. Soft capsule gels of vinorelbine should not be taken with hot fluids, as the medicine may quickly dissolve.
  • Vinorelbine is not recommended in children below 18 years.

Frequently asked questions


Q. Is vinorelbine a vesicant?
Yes, vinorelbine is a vesicant.
Q. Is vinorelbine effective?
Vinorelbine is effective for the dose and duration prescribed by the doctor for your condition.
Q. How is vinorelbine administered?
Vinorelbine is administered as an intravenous infusion.
Q. Does vinorelbine cause hair loss?
Vinorelbine has hair loss as a side effect. Please inform your doctor about any side effects that you may observe while on therapy.

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)