Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on May 8, 2022.
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Antineoplastic Agent
Pharmacologic Class: Monoclonal Antibody
Uses for olaratumab
Olaratumab injection is used in combination with doxorubicin to treat soft tissue sarcoma (STS) in patients who cannot be cured with radiation therapy or surgery, and need to be treated with an anthracycline-containing regimen. Olaratumab interferes with the growth of tumor, which are eventually destroyed by the body.
Olaratumab is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of your doctor.
Before using olaratumab
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For olaratumab, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to olaratumab or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of olaratumab injection in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.
Although appropriate studies on the relationship of age to the effects of olaratumab injection have not been performed in the geriatric population, no geriatric-specific problems have been documented to date.
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Proper use of olaratumab
A nurse or other trained health professional will give you olaratumab in a hospital. Olaratumab is given through a needle placed in one of your veins.
Olaratumab is usually given on Day 1 and Day 8 of a 21-day cycle treatment. For the first 8 cycles, it is given in combination with doxorubicin. Each treatment usually takes about 60 minutes.
Precautions while using olaratumab
If you will be using olaratumab for a long time, it is very important that your doctor check you at regular visits for any unwanted effects from the medicine.
Using olaratumab while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant during treatment and for 3 months after the last dose of olaratumab. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
Olaratumab may cause a rare but serious type of an allergic reaction called an infusion related reaction. This can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Tell your doctor right away if you start to have cough, difficulty with swallowing, dizziness, fast heartbeat, trouble breathing, chest tightness, swelling in your face or hands, fever, chills, itching or hives, or lightheadedness or faintness while you are receiving olaratumab.
Olaratumab side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- Back pain
- blurred vision
- chest tightness
- difficulty with breathing
- difficulty with swallowing
- dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
- fast heartbeat
- feeling of warmth
- hives, itching, or skin rash
- nausea and vomiting
- no blood pressure or pulse
- noisy breathing
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
- stopping of heart
- tightness in the chest
- unusual tiredness or weakness
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Abdominal or stomach pain
- burning, tingling, numbness or pain in the hands, arms, feet, or legs
- cracked lips
- decreased appetite
- difficulty with moving
- dry eyes
- fear or nervousness
- hair loss or thinning of the hair
- muscle pain or stiffness
- pain in the joints
- sensation of pins and needles
- sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips, tongue, or inside the mouth
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More about olaratumab
- Side effects
- Drug interactions
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Drug class: miscellaneous antineoplastics
- Other brands
Related treatment guides
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.