How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
Mitotane belongs to the group of cancer-fighting medicines known as antineoplastics. It is used to treat certain kinds of cancer that affect the adrenal cortex (the part of the body responsible for making steroid hormones like cortisol). Mitotane reduces the amount of adrenocorticoid hormones produced by the adrenal cortex, thus starving cancer cells that need these hormones for survival.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each one-half inch, biconvex, round, compressed white tablet, bisected on one side and impressed with "BL" over "L1" on the other side, contains mitotane 500 mg. Nonmedicinal ingredients: microcrystalline cellulose, polyethylene glycol, silicon dioxide, and starch.
How should I use this medication?
The dose of mitotane depends on response to the medication and the amount of medication that can be tolerated. Usually the starting dose is 9 g to 10 g of mitotane daily in 3 or 4 equally divided doses, with or without food. Your doctor may increase the dose, depending on response, until adverse effects appear. Usually this medication is started in the hospital until a stable dose is reached.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Store this medication away from moisture, heat, and direct light; and keep it out of the reach of children.
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not take this medication if you are allergic to mitotane or any ingredients of the medication.
What side effects are possible with this medication?
Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.
The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes this medication. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of this medication with your doctor.
The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.
- dizziness or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position
- flushing or redness of skin
- muscle aches
- muscle twitching
- tiredness or drowsiness
Although most of the side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not seek medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- fast or pounding heartbeat
- signs of allergic reaction (swelling of the mouth, face or tongue or difficulty breathing)
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?
Before you begin taking a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should take this medication.
Drowsiness/reduced alertness: Mitotane may cause sedation, lethargy, or dizziness. You should exercise caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other tasks requiring mental alertness.
Infection: As well as killing cancer cells, medications that fight cancer can reduce the number of cells that fight infection in the body (white blood cells). Avoid contact with people with contagious infections and tell your doctor if you notice signs of an infection, such as fever or chills.
Pregnancy: The safety of mitotane during pregnancy has not been established. This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks.
Breast-feeding: It is not known if mitotane is passes into breast milk. This medication should not be used during breast-feeding unless the benefits outweigh the risks.
What other drugs could interact with this medication?
There may be an interaction between mitotane and any of the following:
- sedatives such as lorazepam
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
- stop taking one of the medications,
- change one of the medications to another,
- change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
- leave everything as is.
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2017. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/drug/getdrug/Lysodren