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Hycamtin (Injection)

Generic Name: Topotecan Injection (TOE poe TEE kan)
Brand Name: Hycamtin

Medically reviewed: April 4, 2018

Warning

  • This medicine may lower the ability of your bone marrow to make blood cells that your body needs. This can lead to needing a blood transfusion and very bad and sometimes deadly bleeding problems or infections. Tell your doctor right away if you have signs of infection like fever, chills, or sore throat; any bruising or bleeding; or if you feel very tired or weak.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.

Uses of Hycamtin:

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Hycamtin?

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Hycamtin (topotecan injection).

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 Hycamtin (topotecan injection) 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 Hycamtin?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take Hycamtin (topotecan injection). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Hycamtin (topotecan injection) affects you.
  • 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.
  • The oral form of Hycamtin (topotecan injection) can cause very bad diarrhea. Sometimes, this may be life-threatening and may need to be treated in the hospital. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you have upset stomach, throwing up, loose stools (diarrhea), or are not hungry, talk with your doctor. There may be ways to lower these side effects.
  • Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use with Hycamtin (topotecan injection) may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
  • If you are 65 or older, use Hycamtin (topotecan injection) with care. You could have more side effects.
  • If you are a man and have sex with a female who could get pregnant, protect her from pregnancy during care and for 3 months after care ends. Use birth control that you can trust.
  • If you are a man and your sex partner gets pregnant while you take Hycamtin (topotecan injection) or within 3 months after your last dose, call your doctor right away.
  • This medicine may affect sperm in men. This may affect being able to father a child. Talk with the doctor.
  • This medicine may cause fertility problems. This may affect being able to have children. Talk with the doctor.
  • This medicine may cause harm to the unborn baby if you take it while you are pregnant.
  • If you are female, use birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy while taking Hycamtin (topotecan injection) and for 1 month after stopping this drug.
  • If you get pregnant while taking Hycamtin (topotecan injection) or within 1 month after your last dose, call your doctor right away.

How is this medicine (Hycamtin) best taken?

Use Hycamtin (topotecan injection) 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.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

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 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, or wound that will not heal.
  • Signs of bleeding like throwing up blood or throw up that looks like coffee grounds; coughing up blood; blood in the urine; black, red, or tarry stools; bleeding from the gums; vaginal bleeding that is not normal; bruises without a reason or that get bigger; or any bleeding that is very bad or that you cannot stop.
  • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Stomach cramps.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly lung problems have happened with Hycamtin (topotecan injection). Call your doctor right away if you have lung or breathing problems like trouble breathing, shortness of breath, or a cough that is new or worse.
  • This medicine can cause a very bad and sometimes deadly bowel problem (neutropenic enterocolitis). Call your doctor right away if you have stomach pain with or without a fever.
  • 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 Hycamtin?

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:

  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Hair loss.
  • Not hungry.

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.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

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 Hycamtin?

  • If you need to store Hycamtin (topotecan injection) 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 Hycamtin (topotecan injection), 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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