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What is this medicine?
TEMOZOLOMIDE (te moe ZOE loe mide) is a chemotherapy drug. It is used to treat some kinds of brain cancer.
How should I use this medicine?
This medicine is for injection into a vein. It is usually given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.
If you get this medicine at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give this medicine. Use exactly as directed. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or healthcare provider to get one.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
low blood counts - this medicine may decrease the number of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. You may be at increased risk for infections and bleeding.
signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, sore throat, pain or difficulty passing urine
signs of decreased platelets or bleeding - bruising, pinpoint red spots on the skin, black, tarry stools, blood in the urine
signs of decreased red blood cells - unusually weak or tired, fainting spells, lightheadedness
signs and symptoms of liver injury like dark yellow or brown urine; general ill feeling or flu-like symptoms; light-colored stools; loss of appetite; nausea; right upper belly pain; unusually weak or tired; yellowing of the eyes or skin
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
What may interact with this medicine?
What if I miss a dose?
It is important not to miss your dose. Call your doctor or health care professional if you are unable to keep an appointment.
Where should I keep my medicine?
Keep out of the reach of children.
If you are using this medicine at home, you will be instructed on how to store this medicine. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date on the label.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
infection (especially a virus infection such as chickenpox, cold sores, or herpes)
an unusual or allergic reaction to temozolomide, dacarbazine (DTIC), other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
pregnant or trying to get pregnant
What should I watch for while using this medicine?
This drug may make you feel generally unwell. This is not uncommon, as chemotherapy can affect healthy cells as well as cancer cells. Report any side effects. Continue your course of treatment even though you feel ill unless your doctor tells you to stop.
Call your doctor or health care professional for advice if you get a fever, chills or sore throat, or other symptoms of a cold or flu. Call if you get diarrhea. Do not treat yourself. This drug decreases your body's ability to fight infections. Try to avoid being around people who are sick.
This medicine may increase your risk to bruise or bleed. Call your doctor or health care professional if you notice any unusual bleeding.
You may need blood work done while you are taking this medicine.
Talk to your doctor about your risk of cancer. You may be more at risk for certain types of cancers if you take this medicine.
This drug may cause birth defects. Both men and women who are taking this medicine should use effective birth control.
Do not become pregnant while taking this medicine. Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. Men should not father a child while taking this medicine. Contact your doctor right away if your partner becomes pregnant. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information. Do not breast-feed an infant while taking this medicine.