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flutamide

Pronunciation

Generic Name: flutamide (oral) (FLEW ta mide)
Brand Name: Eulexin

What is flutamide?

Flutamide is an antiandrogen. It works in the body to prevent the actions of androgens (male hormones).

Flutamide is used in the treatment of prostate cancer.

Flutamide may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about flutamide?

In rare cases, flutamide has caused severe liver damage resulting in death or hospitalization. Notify your doctor immediately if you develop nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, unusual fatigue, loss of appetite, "flu-like" symptoms, yellow skin or eyes, itching, clay-colored stools, or dark urine. These symptoms may be early signs of liver damage.

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Your doctor will need to monitor your liver function with blood tests before starting treatment with flutamide, every month for the first 4 months of treatment, and periodically thereafter.

Do not stop taking this medication without first talking to your doctor.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking flutamide?

Before taking flutamide, tell your doctor if you

  • smoke,

  • have liver disease,

  • have glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency, or

  • have hemoglobin M deficiency.

You may not be able to take flutamide, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed above.

Flutamide is not indicated for use by women. Flutamide is in the FDA pregnancy category D. This means that it is known to harm an unborn baby. Do not take flutamide if you are pregnant.

Flutamide is not indicated for use by women. It is not known whether flutamide passes into breast milk. Do not take flutamide without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding.

How should I take flutamide?

Take flutamide exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass of water.

Flutamide is usually taken three times a day (every 8 hours). Follow your doctor's instructions.

Your doctor will need to monitor your liver function with blood tests before starting treatment with flutamide, every month for the first 4 months of treatment, and periodically thereafter.

In rare cases, flutamide has caused severe liver damage resulting in death or hospitalization. Notify your doctor immediately if you develop nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, unusual fatigue, loss of appetite, "flu-like" symptoms, yellow skin or eyes, itching, clay-colored stools, or dark urine. These symptoms may be early signs of liver damage.

Do not stop taking this medication without first talking to your doctor.

Store flutamide at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention.

Symptoms of a flutamide overdose include decreased activity, slow breathing, dizziness, watering eyes, upraised body hair, decreased appetite, vomiting, and sedation.

What should I avoid while taking flutamide?

This medicine can pass into body fluids (including urine, feces, vomit, semen, vaginal fluid). For at least 48 hours after you receive a dose, avoid allowing your body fluids to come into contact with your hands or other surfaces. Patients and caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up body fluids, handling contaminated trash or laundry or changing diapers. Wash hands before and after removing gloves. Wash soiled clothing and linens separately from other laundry.

Body fluids should not be handled by a woman who is pregnant or who may become pregnant. Use condoms during sexual activity to avoid exposure to body fluids.

There are no restrictions on foods, beverages, or activities while taking flutamide. Follow any special instructions given by your doctor.

Flutamide side effects

Stop taking flutamide and seek emergency medical attention if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives).

In rare cases, flutamide has caused severe liver damage resulting in death or hospitalization. Notify your doctor immediately if you develop nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, unusual fatigue, loss of appetite, "flu-like" symptoms, yellow skin or eyes, itching, clay-colored stools, or dark urine. These symptoms may be early signs of liver damage.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take flutamide and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • hot flashes,

  • diarrhea,

  • skin rash,

  • increased skin sensitivity to sunlight,

  • loss of sex drive,

  • impotence,

  • lowered sperm count,

  • enlarged breasts,

  • amber or greenish discoloration of the urine,

  • rectal bleeding or inflammation, or

  • blood in the urine.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Flutamide dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Prostate Cancer:

For use in locally confined stage B2-C and stage D2 metastatic carcinoma of the prostate: 250 mg orally every 8 hours.

Usual Adult Dose for Hirsutism:

Data has been reported in which 250 mg of flutamide 2 to 3 times daily in combination with oral contraceptives has been used in the treatment of female patients with hirsutism.

However, FDA approved package labeling states that flutamide has no indication for women, and should not be used in this population, particularly for nonserious or non-life threatening conditions.

What other drugs will affect flutamide?

Before taking flutamide, tell your doctor if you are taking warfarin. Flutamide may interact with warfarin, and the interaction could lead to bleeding.

Drugs other than those listed here may also interact with flutamide. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has additional information about flutamide written for health professionals that you may read.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.02. Revision Date: 2013-07-08, 1:58:57 PM.

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