GENERIC NAME: altretamine
BRAND NAME: Hexalen
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Altretamine is an oral drug that is used to treat ovarian cancer. The precise mechanism by which altretamine exerts its anti-cancer effect is unknown. It was approved by the FDA in 1990.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Altretamine is used for the treatment of ovarian cancer that has persisted or has recurred following treatment with other anti-cancer drugs. Although not an approved use, altretamine also has been used for treating lung cancer.
SIDE EFFECTS: Common side effects are:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Peripheral neuropathy (abnormal function of the sensory nerves of the arms and legs giving rise to symptoms such as numbness, tingling, etc.) and central nervous system symptoms (mood disorders, disorders of consciousness, ataxia)
- dizziness, and
GENERIC AVAILABLE: No.
PREPARATIONS: Capsules of 50 mg.
STORAGE: Capsules should be stored at room temperature, 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).
White blood cell counts and platelet counts may drop with altretamine treatment, increasing the risk of infection and bleeding, respectively.
DOSING: The dose of altretamine is 260 mg/square meter/day. Altretamine may be taken either for 14 or 21 consecutive days as part of one or more 28 day cycles. The total daily dose generally is split into four oral doses, one oral dose after each meal and at bedtime.
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