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Lynparza

Generic Name: olaparib (oh LAP a rib)
Brand Names: Lynparza

Medically reviewed by Judith Stewart, BPharm. Last updated on Sep 8, 2020.

What is Lynparza?

Lynparza (olaparib) is a cancer medicine that interferes with the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body.

Lynparza is used to treat ovarian cancer, fallopian tube cancer, or peritoneal cancer in women with a certain abnormal inherited gene. This medicine is sometimes given when the cancer has come back after treatment with other medications.

Lynparza is used to treat HER2-negative breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body before or after prior chemotherapy or hormonal treatment.

Lynparza is used to treat pancreatic cancer in patients with a certain abnormal inherited gene.

Lynparza is also used to treat prostate cancer with certain inherited or acquired abnormal genes.

Lynparza is sometimes used only if your cancer has a specific genetic marker (an abnormal "BRCA" or "HRR" gene). Your doctor will test you for this gene.

Important Information

Lynparza affects your immune system. You may get infections more easily, even serious or fatal infections. Call your doctor if you have a fever, weakness, tiredness, trouble breathing, easy bruising or bleeding, blood in your urine or stools, or weight loss.

You will need weekly or monthly blood tests, and your cancer treatments may be delayed based on the results.

Some people who take olaparib with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) medicine may develop a blood clot in the leg or in the lung. Call your doctor if you have pain or swelling in your arm or leg, shortness of breath, chest pain, rapid breathing, or fast heartbeats.

Lynparza may also cause serious lung problems. Call your doctor if you have chest pain, wheezing, trouble breathing, or a new or worsening cough.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Lynparza if you are allergic to olaparib.

To make sure Lynparza is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • lung disease, breathing problems; or

  • kidney disease.

Olaparib can harm an unborn baby or cause a miscarriage if the mother or the father is using this medicine.

  • If you are a woman, do not use this medicine if you are pregnant. You may need to have a negative pregnancy test before starting this treatment. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine and for at least 6 months after your last dose.

  • If you are a man, use effective birth control if your sex partner is able to get pregnant. Keep using birth control for at least 3 months after your last dose. Also do not to donate sperm during the 3 months after your last dose.

  • Tell your doctor right away if a pregnancy occurs while either the mother or the father is using Lynparza.

Do not breastfeed while using this medicine, and for at least 1 month after your last dose.

How should I take Lynparza?

Take Lynparza exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose.

Take your doses at regular intervals, about 12 hours apart. You may take Lynparza with or without food.

Swallow the tablet whole and do not crush, chew, or break it.

Olaparib affects your immune system. You may get infections more easily, even serious or fatal infections. Your doctor will need to examine you on a regular basis.

You may also need chest x-rays to be sure this medicine is not causing harmful effects on your lungs. Your cancer treatments may be delayed based on the results.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Skip the missed dose and use your next dose at the regular time. Do not use two doses at one time.

Do not take more than 4 Lynparza tablets in one day.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking Lynparza?

Grapefruit and Seville oranges may interact with olaparib and lead to unwanted side effects. Avoid the use of grapefruit products and orange marmalades.

Lynparza side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Lynparza: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

You may get infections more easily, even serious or fatal infections. Call your doctor right away if you have signs of infection such as:

  • fever, chills, weakness, feeling light-headed or very tired;

  • mouth sores, skin sores;

  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding;

  • pain or burning when you urinate, blood in your urine or stools;

  • pale skin, cold hands and feet

  • weight loss; or

  • cough, wheezing, shortness of breath.

Your cancer treatments may be delayed if you have certain side effects.

Some people who take olaparib with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) medicine may develop a blood clot in the leg or in the lung. Call your doctor if you have pain or swelling in your arm or leg, shortness of breath, chest pain, rapid breathing, or fast heartbeats.

Common Lynparza side effects may include:

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Lynparza?

Sometimes it is not safe to use certain medications at the same time. Some drugs can affect your blood levels of other drugs you take, which may increase side effects or make the medications less effective.

Other drugs may interact with olaparib, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Lynparza only for the indication prescribed.

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