radium Ra 223 dichloride (Xofigo)

  • Medical Editor: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.

  • Pharmacy Author: Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

What is radium Ra 223 dichloride Xofigo, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Radium Ra 223 (Xofigo) is a radioactive medicine (radiotherapeutic drug) that is used to treat male patients with symptoms of advanced prostate cancer that has spread to the bones, but not to other parts of the body. The radioactive particles emitted by radium Ra 223 helps kill cancer cells in the bone by damaging their DNA. Radium Ra 223 causes minimal damage to the nearby healthy cells. Radium Ra 223 can help some patients live longer. Compared to placebo, radium Ra 223 extended life by 14.9 months vs. 11.3 months for the placebo group. The FDA approved Radium Ra 223 in May 2013.

What brand names are available for radium Ra 223 dichloride Xofigo?


Is radium Ra 223 dichloride Xofigo available as a generic drug?


Do I need a prescription for radium Ra 223 dichloride Xofigo?


What are the side effects of radium Ra 223 dichloride Xofigo?

The most common side effects of radium Ra 223 are:

To avoid dehydration caused by diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting, patients are advised to drink plenty of water and report any signs of dehydration such as dry mouth or increased thirst.

Radium Ra 223 can cause bone marrow suppression, a potentially serious condition in which blood cell counts decrease. In clinical studies, use of radium Ra 223 caused a drop in red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets in some patients. Because of serious bone marrow problems, some patients had to permanently discontinue treatment, required blood transfusions, and some deaths were reported.

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