If you have ovarian cancer, your healthcare provider may recommend Hexalen® (altretamine). Hexalen is used when the cancer has come back or has not responded adequately to other chemotherapy treatment. Although this drug is not a cure for this disease, it can help relieve cancer symptoms.
Although Hexalen can be an effective treatment for many people, it's important to review the safety information for this chemotherapy drug before starting treatment to help minimize the risk of complications. You may not be able to take this medicine if you are taking certain products, have severe brain or nerve problems, or are pregnant or nursing.
Hexalen comes in the form of capsules that are taken by mouth four times daily, usually after meals and at bedtime. Most people who take this medicine will develop some type of side effect, such as nausea, vomiting, or numbness in the hands and feet.
(Click Hexalen for more information on this form of chemotherapy, including how it works, what to do in cases of overdose, and more.)
Written by/reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: ArthurSchoenstadt, MD
List of references (click here):
Hexalen [package insert]. Woodcliff Lake, NJ: Eisai, Inc.;May 2009.
Altretamine. Drug Facts and Comparisons. Drug Facts and Comparisons 4.0 [online]. 2012. Available from Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. September 15, 2012.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed September 15, 2012.
National Library of Medicine (US). Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?HSDB. Accessed September 15, 2012.
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