Skip to Content
Diagnosed with Prostate Cancer? Learn about your treatment options >>

Bicalutamide

Generic Name: bicalutamide (bye ka LOO ta mide)
Brand Name: Casodex

Medically reviewed on March 27, 2017

What is bicalutamide?

See also: Erleada

Bicalutamide is an anti-androgen. It works in the body by preventing the actions of androgens (male hormones).

Bicalutamide is used together with another hormone to treat prostate cancer.

Bicalutamide may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Although bicalutamide is not for use by women, bicalutamide can cause birth defects if a woman is exposed to it during pregnancy.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to bicalutamide.

Use effective birth control if your sexual partner is able to get pregnant. An unborn baby can be harmed if a man fathers the child while he is using bicalutamide. Keep using birth control for at least 130 days (about 19 weeks) after your last dose.

Bicalutamide should never be taken by a woman or a child.

Although bicalutamide is not for use by women, this medicine can cause birth defects if a woman is exposed to it during pregnancy.

To make sure bicalutamide is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

How should I take bicalutamide?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Do not take bicalutamide in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Bicalutamide is usually taken once per day in the morning or evening. You may take the medicine with or without food. Try to take the medication at the same time each day.

Bicalutamide is given as part of a combination prostate cancer treatment with another medicine called a luteinizing (LOO-tee-in-ize-ing) hormone-releasing hormone, or LHRH. These medicines prevent the testicles from producing testosterone.

Treatment with bicalutamide and LHRH is usually started at the same time. Follow your doctor's instructions.

LHRH is given as an injection or a tiny implant injected through a needle under the skin around your navel. LHRH injections are given at intervals such as once every 4 weeks. Follow your doctor's instructions.

You should not stop using bicalutamide unless your doctor tells you to.

While using bicalutamide, you may need frequent blood tests.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Read all patient information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided to you. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your LHRH injection.

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 bicalutamide?

bicalutamide may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds. Bicalutamide can make you sunburn more easily. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors.

This medicine can pass into body fluids (urine, feces, vomit). Caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up a patient's 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.

Bicalutamide side effects

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

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • breast pain or swelling;

  • blood in your urine;

  • fever, chills;

  • sudden chest pain or discomfort, wheezing, dry cough, feeling short of breath;

  • low red blood cells (anemia)--pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating;

  • liver problems--nausea, upper stomach pain, feeling tired, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or

  • high blood sugar--increased thirst, increased urination, hunger, dry mouth, fruity breath odor, drowsiness, dry skin, blurred vision, weight loss.

Common 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.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Bicalutamide dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Prostate Cancer:

50 mg orally once a day, given at the same time each day.

What other drugs will affect bicalutamide?

Other drugs may interact with bicalutamide, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now 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 this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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

Hide