Winthrop Oxaliplatin is used to treat cancer of the oesophagus/stomach, large intestine and rectum (colorectal cancer). Winthrop Oxaliplatin is used in combination with other anti-cancer drugs, capecitabine, bevacizumab, epirubicin, fluorouracil (FU), and/or folinic acid. The active ingredient in Winthrop Oxaliplatin is called oxaliplatin.
Cancer cells are normal cells which have changed so that they grow in an uncontrolled way. Oxaliplatin works by interfering with cancer cell growth. Because of the similarities between cancer cells and normal cells, anti cancer drugs often have unwanted effects on the body.
Your doctors have decided to treat you with Winthrop Oxaliplatin because they believe that the benefit of Winthrop Oxaliplatin treatment will be greater than the unwanted effects.
Many of the side effects from anti cancer drugs are predictable and can be prevented or lessened. Your doctor and other staff will take all of the precautions needed to reduce the unwanted effects of treatment.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin is only available on a prescription from your doctor.
You should not be given Winthrop Oxaliplatin if you are allergic to the active ingredient "oxaliplatin".
If you have had an allergic reaction to oxaliplatin before, you should not receive it again.
You must not receive Winthrop Oxaliplatin if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Oxaliplatin may cause birth defects if you are being treated with it at the time of conception or it is given to women who are already pregnant. Adequate contraception is required during treatment with oxaliplatin. You should discuss this with your doctor. Nursing mothers are advised not to breastfeed while receiving oxaliplatin, as the effect of breast milk from such patients is unknown.
You must not receive Winthrop Oxaliplatin if you have severe kidney disease.
Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you what to do if you are taking any of these medicines.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin will be given to you as an infusion into one of your veins (this is called an intravenous infusion). The infusion will be given over 2 - 6 hours.
The dose of Winthrop Oxaliplatin is calculated according to your body surface area, which is calculated from your weight and height. The usual dose is 85mg/m2 every two weeks or 130mg/m2 every three weeks. Your doctor may change the dose in some circumstances.
Each course of treatment is called a cycle; your doctor will tell you how many cycles you will receive.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin will be used with one or more of the following drugs: capecitabine, bevacizumab, epirubicin, fluorouracil (FU) and/or folinic acid. Your doctor will select the appropriate combination of drugs for your treatment.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin is not recommended in children.
Avoid cold foods and drinks and cover skin prior to exposure to cold during or within 48 hours following being given oxaliplatin, since neurological effects may be brought on or worsened by exposure to cold.
Contact your doctor immediately if you develop fever, particularly in association with persistent diarrhoea or evidence of infection since this may indicate low blood count.
Contact your doctor if persistent vomiting, diarrhoea, signs of dehydration, cough or breathing difficulties or signs of allergic reaction occur.
Visual disturbance is a rare side effect of Winthrop Oxaliplatin. Contact your doctor if this happens to you, and do not drive or use machinery until your vision is clear.
Tell your doctor or nurse as soon as possible if you do not feel well while Winthrop Oxaliplatin is being given to you. You should also tell your doctor if you do not feel well between courses of Winthrop Oxaliplatin.
All medicines can have side effects. It is important to understand the side effects that Winthrop Oxaliplatin may cause, even though you may not experience them. As well as the predictable side effects of Winthrop Oxaliplatin, there are other effects that occur much more rarely.
If you have any side effects or notice anything unusual it is important to inform your doctor before your next treatment.
Your doctor will decide whether such effects are because of your treatment, and what action needs to be taken.
This section explains the side effects of Winthrop Oxaliplatin, and some of the checks made before each treatment to prevent excessive side effects.
Other known side effects of Winthrop Oxaliplatin are:
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. Tell your doctor if you notice anything else that is making you feel unwell.
Your doctor will decide what dose of Winthrop Oxaliplatin you need, and this will be given under close supervision, usually in a hospital setting. The risk of an overdosage in these circumstances is low. In the event of an overdose occurring, your doctor will decide on the treatment necessary.
If you need to store Winthrop Oxaliplatin before you take it with you to hospital, make sure it is stored in a cool dry place where the temperature does not exceed 30 degrees C.
Do not use it after the expiry date (EXP) printed on the vial.
This is not all the information that is available on Winthrop Oxaliplatin. If you have any more questions or are not sure about anything ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin comes as a powder in a glass vial.
A box contains 1 vial.
Each Winthrop Oxaliplatin vial contains the active ingredient, oxaliplatin 100mg.
Beside the active ingredient - Winthrop Oxaliplatin powder for injection also contains lactose.
Winthrop Oxaliplatin is supplied in Australia by:
sanofi-aventis australia pty ltd
12-24 Talavera Road
Macquarie Park, NSW 2113
Winthrop Oxaliplatin 100 mg powder for injection
AUST R 122549
This leaflet was updated in May 2009.