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Etoposide Phosphate

Generic Name: Etoposide Phosphate (e toe POE side FOS fate)
Brand Name: Etopophos

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Oct 1, 2019.

Uses of Etoposide Phosphate:

  • It is used to treat testicular cancer.
  • It is used to treat lung cancer.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Etoposide Phosphate?

  • If you have an allergy to etoposide, etoposide phosphate, or any other part of etoposide phosphate.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If you are breast-feeding. Do not breast-feed while you take etoposide phosphate.

This medicine may interact with other drugs or health problems.

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take etoposide phosphate with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Etoposide Phosphate?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take etoposide phosphate. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Long-term use may raise your chance of getting other cancers. Talk with the doctor.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use of some vaccines with etoposide phosphate may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
  • You may have more chance of getting an infection. Wash hands often. Stay away from people with infections, colds, or flu.
  • You may bleed more easily. Be careful and avoid injury. Use a soft toothbrush and an electric razor.
  • If you have upset stomach, throwing up, diarrhea, or are not hungry, talk with your doctor. There may be ways to lower these side effects.
  • If you have had or will be having radiation treatment, talk with your doctor. Worse side effects from radiation treatment have happened with etoposide phosphate.
  • This medicine may affect fertility. Fertility problems may lead to not being able to get pregnant or father a child. In both men and women, this may go back to normal but sometimes it may not. Talk with your doctor.
  • Men with a partner who may get pregnant must use birth control while taking etoposide phosphate and for some time after the last dose. Ask your doctor how long to use birth control. If your partner gets pregnant, call the doctor right away.
  • Females treated with etoposide phosphate may go through menopause at a younger age than normal. Talk with the doctor.
  • This medicine may cause harm to the unborn baby if you take it while you are pregnant.
  • Women must use birth control while taking etoposide phosphate and for some time after the last dose. Ask your doctor how long to use birth control. If you get pregnant, call your doctor right away.

How is this medicine (Etoposide Phosphate) best taken?

Use etoposide phosphate as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • It is given as an infusion into a vein over a period of time.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Call your doctor to find out what to do.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of lung or breathing problems like shortness of breath or other trouble breathing, cough, or fever.
  • Signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
  • Signs of kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in how much urine is passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Loss of eyesight.
  • Seizures.
  • Change in color of skin.
  • This medicine may lower the ability of your bone marrow to make blood cells that your body needs. This can lead to very bad and sometimes deadly bleeding problems or infections. Tell your doctor right away if you have signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, a wound that will not heal; any bruising or bleeding; or if you feel very tired or weak.
  • A very bad skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) may happen. It can cause very bad health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Get medical help right away if you have signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
  • This medicine may cause tissue damage if the drug leaks from the vein. Tell your nurse if you have any redness, burning, pain, swelling, blisters, skin sores, or leaking of fluid where the drug is going into your body.

What are some other side effects of Etoposide Phosphate?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Constipation.
  • Stomach pain.
  • Change in taste.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out Etoposide Phosphate?

  • If you need to store etoposide phosphate at home, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.

Consumer information use

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about etoposide phosphate, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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