1 What is Eloxatin?

Brand: Eloxatin

Generic: Oxaliplatin

Eloxatin injection is administered along with other medicines so as to treat advanced cancer of the colon or rectum. It may also be used in the treatment of severe colon cancer in patients who have had a surgery.

Eloxatin is antineoplastic. It is known to cause interference with the growth of cancer cells, which are eventually destroyed. It is possible that it may also have an effect on the growth of the normal cells.

The potential for other effects may also occur. Some of these may be serious and must be reported to your doctor. Other effects may not be serious but may cause concern. Some effects may occur after treatment with oxaliplatin has been stopped.

Be sure that you have discussed with your doctor the possible side effects of this medicine as well as the benefits it can do. This medicine is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of a doctor.

Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems.

Although these uses are not included in product labeling, oxaliplatin is used in certain patients with the medical conditions which may be similar as those of cancer patients.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before using Eloxatin, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. Inform your doctor whether you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines.

Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. As for use of non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Appropriate pediatric studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of oxaliplatin injection in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Geriatric Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of oxaliplatin injection in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney problems, which may require caution in patients receiving oxaliplatin injection.

Pregnancy studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease may outweigh the potential risk.

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose or other precautions may be necessary.

When you are receiving this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive. Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is not recommended.

Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take such as the Rotavirus Vaccine. Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases.

If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines:

  • Adenovirus Vaccine Type 4
  • Live Adenovirus Vaccine Type 7
  • Live Bacillus of Calmette and Guerin Vaccine
  • Live Bupropion Dasabuvir Influenza Virus Vaccine
  • Live Measles Virus Vaccine
  • Live Mumps Virus Vaccine
  • Live Poliovirus Vaccine
  • Live Rubella Virus Vaccine
  • Live Smallpox Vaccine
  • Typhoid Vaccine
  • Varicella Virus Vaccine
  • Yellow Fever Vaccine
  • Other Interactions Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur

Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems. The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine.

Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

Congestive heart failure or Heart rhythm problems (eg, slow heartbeat) or Hypokalemia (low potassium in the blood) or Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium in the blood) ECG monitoring is recommended in patients with these conditions.

Heart rhythm problems (eg, long QT syndrome), family history of Use is not recommended in patients with this condition.

Kidney disease. Effects of oxaliplatin may be increased because of slower removal from the body. In the case of liver disease or Lung disease or Peripheral neuropathy (nerve problem), it is advisable to use this medicine with caution since it may make this condition worse.

3 Proper Usage

To use Eloxatin properly, you must follow all instructions given by your doctor. This medicine often causes nausea and vomiting. However, it is very important that you continue to receive this medicine even if you begin to feel ill.

Other medicines may be given to you to help with nausea and vomiting. Ask your doctor for other ways to lessen these effects. You will receive this medicine while you are in a hospital or cancer treatment center.

A doctor or other trained health professional will give you this medicine. This medicine is given through a needle placed into one of your veins. If any of this medicine gets on your skin or in your eyes, nose, or mouth, tell your doctor or nurse right away.

Eloxatin is usually used with other medicines to treat cancer. This combination of medicines is usually given for 2 days, but you will receive oxaliplatin on the first day only (day 1). This 2-day treatment is given again every 14 days until your body responds to the medicine.

This medicine comes with a patient information leaflet. It is very important that you read and understand this information. Be sure to ask your doctor about anything you do not understand.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Eloxatin, there are some precautions you must take. It is very important that your doctor checks your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly.

Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects. Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant before you receive this medicine. Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby.

If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away. This medicine may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention.

Call your doctor right away if you have a rash, diarrhea, a fever or chills, hives, hoarseness, itching, lightheadedness or dizziness, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth after you receive the medicine.

While you are being treated with oxaliplatin, and after you stop treatment with it, do not have any immunizations (vaccinations) without your doctor's approval. Oxaliplatin may lower your body's resistance and there is a chance you might get the infection the immunization is meant to prevent.

In addition, other persons living in your household should not take oral polio vaccine since there is a chance they could pass the polio virus on to you. Also, avoid persons who have taken oral polio vaccine within the last several months.

Do not get close to them and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you cannot take these precautions, you should consider wearing a protective face mask that covers the nose and mouth.

Oxaliplatin can temporarily lower the number of white blood cells in your blood, increasing the chance of getting an infection. If you can, avoid people with infections.

Check with your doctor immediately if you think you are getting an infection or if you get a fever or chills, cough or hoarseness, lower back or side pain, or painful or difficult urination.

Check with your doctor right away if you start having a cough, shortness of breath, or any problems with breathing. These may be signs of a serious lung disease. Check with your doctor right away if you are having burning, numbness, tingling, or painful sensations in the arms, hands, legs, or feet.

These could be symptoms of a condition called peripheral or sensory neuropathy. Avoid cold drinks and the use of ice cubes in drinks. Avoid cold temperatures and cold objects. Cover your skin if you must go outside in cold temperatures.

Do not put ice or ice packs on your body. Do not breathe deeply when exposed to cold air. Do not take things from the freezer or refrigerator without wearing gloves. Do not run the air conditioner at high levels in the house or in the car in hot weather.

Check with your doctor right away if you have pain or tenderness in the upper stomach, pale stools, dark urine, loss of appetite, nausea, unusual tiredness or weakness, or yellow eyes or skin. These could be symptoms of a serious liver problem.

Contact your doctor right away if you have any changes to your heart rhythm. You might feel dizzy or faint, or you might have a fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat. Make sure your doctor knows if you or anyone in your family has ever had a heart rhythm problem such as QT prolongation.

Rhabdomyolysis may occur while you are using this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you have dark urine, fever, muscle cramps or spasms, muscle pain or stiffness, or unusual tiredness or weakness.

This medicine may cause blurred vision or other vision problems. If any of these occur, do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not able to see well. If these reactions are especially bothersome, check with your doctor.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

5 Potential Side Effects

Make sure you meet with your doctor in using Eloxatin to avoid unwanted potential side effects. However, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

The most common side effects include:

  • abnormal tongue sensation
  • black, tarry stools
  • bleeding gums
  • blistering, peeling, redness or swelling of the palms of the hands or bottoms of the feet
  • blood in the urine or stools
  • burning, prickling, itching or tingling of the skin
  • chest pain
  • chills
  • a cough
  • decreased feeling or pain in the hands, feet, around the mouth or throat
  • decreased urination
  • difficulty performing daily activities such as writing, buttoning, swallowing or walking
  • the difficulty with articulating words
  • the difficulty with breathing
  • the difficulty with moving
  • the difficulty with swallowing
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth
  • eye pain
  • fainting
  • fever
  • the increase in heart rate
  • jaw spasm
  • lightheadedness
  • muscle pain or stiffness
  • numbness, pain, tingling or unusual sensations in the palms of the hands or bottoms of the feet
  • pain in the chest, groin or legs, especially the calves pain in the joints
  • painful or difficult urination
  • pale skin
  • pinpoint, red spots on the skin
  • rapid breathing
  • the sensation of pins and needles
  • sore throat
  • sores, ulcers or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  • stabbing pain
  • sunken
  • eyes swelling
  • swelling or inflammation of the mouth
  • swollen glands
  • thirst
  • troubled breathing with exertion unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vision changes
  • wrinkled skin

Some of the less common side effect include:

  • fast heartbeat
  • hives, itching or skin rash
  • increased thirst
  • irregular heartbeat
  • loss of appetite
  • mood changes
  • nausea or vomiting
  • numbness or tingling in the hands, feet or lips
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips or tongue
  • tightness in the chest

Some of the incidence that is not known include:

  • back, leg or stomach pains
  • blindness
  • bloated abdomen, blue-yellow color
  • blindness
  • blurred vision
  • changes in patterns and rhythms of speech
  • dark urine
  • deafness
  • decreased vision
  • deep breathing
  • drowsiness
  • the electric shock-like sensation that moves down the back and into the legs following a bending movement of the neck
  • general body swelling
  • increased urination
  • irregular heartbeat
  • recurrent large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet or sex organs
  • loss of deep tendon reflexes
  • muscle cramps or spasms
  • muscle tremors
  • pain and fullness in the right upper abdomen
  • restlessness
  • severe constipation
  • severe diarrhea
  • severe nosebleeds
  • severe stomach cramps or tenderness
  • severe vomiting
  • trouble with speaking
  • twitches of the muscle, visible under the skin
  • the weakness of the muscles in your face
  • weight gain
  • yellow eyes or skin

It is recommended that one needs to get emergency help immediately when any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:

  • symptoms of overdose
  • agitation
  • coma
  • a cough or hoarseness
  • diarrhea
  • disorientation
  • involuntary, rapid or rhythmic movement of the eyes
  • lack of coordination
  • lack of sensation
  • lethargy
  • lower back or side pain
  • paralysis
  • respiratory failure
  • seizures
  • severe weakness
  • slow or irregular heartbeat
  • tremors
  • vomiting
  • profuse

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

The most common bothersome side effects include:  

  • acid or sour stomach
  • belching
  • body aches or pain
  • ear congestion
  • feeling unusually cold
  • shivering
  • headache
  • heartburn
  • indigestion
  • loss of voice
  • nasal congestion
  • a runny nose
  • sneezing
  • stomach discomfort, upset or pain
  • trouble sleeping
  • weight loss

The less common side effects include:

  • Bad, unusual or unpleasant (after) taste
  • bloated or full feeling
  • bloody nose
  • burning while urinating
  • change in taste
  • congestion
  • cracked lips
  • dryness or soreness of the throat
  • excess air or gas in stomach or intestines
  • the feeling of warmth
  • hair loss
  • passing gas
  • rapid weight gain
  • redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally upper chest
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • thinning of the hair
  • unusual tearing of the eyes
  • voice changes

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.