Degarelix is a man-made form of protein that reduces the number of certain hormones in the body, including testosterone.
Degarelix injection is used to treat prostate cancer. It works by decreasing the amount of testosterone in the body, which the tumor needs to grow.
HOW DEGARELIX IS GIVEN
- Degarelix is injected under the skin at the abdominal region only
- Rotate injection sites
- A loading dose of 240 mg is administered via two 120 mg (3 mL) injections in different sites
- The maintenance dose is 80 mg and it is administered as one (4 mL) injection every 28 days
- Begin maintenance dose 28 days after initial loading dose
The amount of degarelix that you will receive is fixed-dose and does not require dose adjustment.
Pain/redness/swelling at the injection site, hot flashes (flushing), increased sweating, night sweats, back/joint pain, chills, weight changes, tiredness, fever, and dizziness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Rarely, shrinking of the testicles, breast tenderness/swelling, and reduced sexual interest/ability may also occur as a result of lowered testosterone levels. Talk to your doctor if these effects occur.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including dark urine, persistent nausea/vomiting/loss of appetite, stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin.
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including fast/irregular heartbeat, severe dizziness, and fainting.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Usual Adult Dose for Prostate Cancer:
Initial Dose:- 240 mg administered as 2 subcutaneous injections of 120 mg each at a concentration of 40 mg/mL.
Maintenance Dose:- 80 mg administered as 1 subcutaneous injection at a concentration of 20 mg/mL every 28 days.
Comments:- Administer the first maintenance dose 28 days after the initial dose.
- Before starting degarelix treatment, make sure you tell your doctor about any other medications you are taking (including prescription, over-the-counter, vitamins, herbal remedies, etc.).
- Do not receive any kind of immunization or vaccination without your doctor’s approval while taking degarelix.
- Drink at least two to three quarts of fluid every 24 hours, unless you are instructed otherwise.
- Wash your hands often.
- Avoid contact sports or activities that could cause injury.
- To reduce nausea, take anti-nausea medications as prescribed by your doctor, and eat small, frequent meals.
- Follow a regimen of anti-diarrhea medications as prescribed by your health care professional.
- Eat foods that may help reduce diarrhea.
- In general, drinking alcoholic beverages should be kept to a minimum or avoided completely. You should discuss this with your doctor.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Maintain good nutrition.
- Remain active as you are able. Gentle exercise is encouraged such as a daily walk.
- If you experience symptoms or side effects, be sure to discuss them with your health care team. They can prescribe medications and/or offer other suggestions that are effective in managing such problems.
- If you are experiencing hot flashes, wear light clothing, stay in a cool environment, and put cool clothes on your head to reduce symptoms.
- Acetaminophen or ibuprofen may help relieve discomfort from fever, headache, and/or generalized aches and pains. However, be sure to talk with your doctor before taking it.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This list does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor’s approval.
Many drugs besides degarelix may affect the heart rhythm (QT prolongation), including amiodarone, dofetilide, pimozide, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol, macrolide antibiotics (such as erythromycin), among others.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including pituitary-gonadal function), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.