Class: Targeted Therapy
Generic Name: Sorafenib
Trade Name: Nexavar®
How is this drug used? Nexavar is FDA approved for the treatment of advanced renal cell carcinoma (kidney cancer) as well as for the treatment of hepatocellular cancer (liver cancer) that cannot be surgically removed. It is important for patients to remember that physicians have the ability to prescribe medication for conditions other than those for which the drug has been approved by the FDA. Patients who have received a prescription of this drug for a condition other than for which it is approved may wish to discuss this issue with their physician.
What is the mechanism of action? Nexavar blocks the growth of cancer cells by inhibiting several biological pathways that are involved in cellular replication and spread.
How is Nexavar® typically given (administered)? Nexavar® is taken orally, typically twice per day. Patients should take Nexavar® on an empty stomach.
How are patients typically monitored? Patients will usually have scheduled meetings with their healthcare provider while they are being treated with Nexavar. Typically, blood will be drawn to check levels of blood cells and to monitor functions of some organ systems, such as the kidneys or liver. Physical examinations, scans or other measures may also be utilized to assess side effects and response to therapy.
What are the common side effects of treatment with Nexavar?
What are some of the less common side effects to be aware of?
This is not a complete list of side effects. Some patients may experience other side effects that are not listed above. Patients may wish to discuss with their physician the other less common side effects of this drug, some of which may be serious.
Some side effects may require medical attention. Other side effects do not require medical attention and may go away during treatment. Patients should check with their physician about any side effects that continue or are bothersome.
What can patients do to help alleviate or prevent discomfort and side effects?
Are there any special precautions patients should be aware of before starting treatment?
When should patients notify their physician?
Tell your doctor if you experience any side effects that bother you or don’t go away. Seek care immediately if you notice symptoms of heart problems, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, feeling lightheaded or faint, nausea, vomiting, or sweating a lot. Also notify your doctor if you experience bleeding problems, skin reactions, or signs of bowel perforation (such as high fever, nausea, vomiting, and severe abdominal pain). Tell your doctor if you need to have any surgical or dental procedures; Nexavar can cause problems with wound healing.
What is a package insert?
A package insert is required by the FDA and contains a summary of the essential scientific information needed for the safe and effective use of the drug by healthcare providers and consumers. A package insert typically includes information regarding specific indications, administration schedules, dosing, side effects, contraindications, results from some clinical trials, chemical structure, pharmacokinetics, and metabolism of the specific drug. By carefully reviewing the package insert, you will get the most complete and current information about how to safely use this drug. If you do not have the package insert for the drug you are using, your pharmacist or physician may be able to provide you with a copy.
Copyright © 2011 CancerConnect Last updated 09/11.
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