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Granisetron (transdermal)

Generic Name: granisetron (transdermal) (gra NIS e tron)
Brand Name: Sancuso

Medically reviewed on September 26, 2016.

What is granisetron transdermal?

Granisetron blocks the actions of chemicals in the body that may cause nausea and vomiting.

Granisetron transdermal (skin patch) is used to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy.

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

Important Information

Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use granisetron if you are allergic to it.

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

  • a stomach or intestinal disorder;

  • if you have recently had stomach or intestinal surgery; or

  • if you have ever had an allergic reaction to any type of medicated skin patch.

Granisetron transdermal is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known whether granisetron transdermal passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use granisetron transdermal?

The granisetron transdermal skin patch is usually applied at least 24 to 48 hours before the start of your chemotherapy. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Apply the patch to clean, dry, and hairless skin on the outer part of your upper arm. Avoid placing the patch on skin that is red, irritated, or damaged. Press the patch firmly into place and make sure it is well sealed around the edges.

Leave the patch in place during your chemotherapy treatment, and for at least 24 hours after your treatment has ended. Peel off the patch gently when removing it.

You may continue wearing a skin patch for up to 7 days if needed, depending on your chemotherapy schedule. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Choose a different place on your body to wear the patch each time you put on a new one. Do not use the same skin area twice within 7 days.

Do not wear more than one granisetron transdermal patch at a time. Using extra skin patches will not make the medicine more effective. Never cut a skin patch.

If a patch falls off, try sticking it back into place. If it does not stick well, put on a new patch and leave it on only for the rest of your wearing time. Do not change your patch removal schedule.

After removing a patch, fold it in half so it sticks together and throw it away in a place where children or pets cannot get to it.

Granisetron transdermal is not likely to be useful if you keep using it during times when you are not receiving chemotherapy.

Do not share this medicine with another person.

Keep each patch in its foil pouch until you are ready to use it. Store the pouches in their original container at room temperature, away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you forget to apply a granisetron skin patch at least 24 hours before your chemotherapy is scheduled to start. Do not use extra patches to make up the missed dose.

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 using granisetron transdermal?

While you are wearing the skin patch, avoid exposing it to sunlight or tanning beds. Natural or artificial sunlight can cause a skin reaction where the granisetron skin patch is worn. This effect may last for up to 10 days after the patch is removed. Wear protective clothing over your arms while you are wearing the skin patch and for at least 10 days after you remove a patch.

Do not cover treated skin with a heating pad. Heat can increase the amount of drug absorbed through your skin and may cause harmful effects.

Granisetron transdermal 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.

Remove the skin patch and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • pain or swelling in your stomach;

  • severe redness, itching, swelling, or other irritation where the patch is worn; or

  • high levels of serotonin in the body--agitation, hallucinations, fever, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, fainting.

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)

Granisetron dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Nausea/Vomiting -- Chemotherapy Induced:

IV: 10 mcg/kg over 5 minutes, beginning 30 minutes before initiation of chemotherapy.

Orally: 2 mg, given up to 1 hour before chemotherapy, or 1 mg twice a day (the first dose is given up to 1 hour before chemotherapy, and the second dose is given 12 hours later).

Granisetron transdermal system: Apply a single patch to the upper outer arm a minimum of 24 hours before chemotherapy. The patch may be applied up to a maximum of 48 hours before chemotherapy as appropriate. Remove the patch a minimum of 24 hours after completion of chemotherapy. The patch can be worn for up to 7 days depending on the duration of the chemotherapy regimen. Granisetron transdermal system is a 52 cm2 patch containing 34.3 mg of granisetron. The patch releases 3.1 mg of granisetron per 24 hours for up to 7 days.

The transdermal system (patch) should be applied to clean, dry, intact healthy skin on the upper outer arm. Granisetron transdermal system should not be placed on skin that is red, irritated or damaged. Each patch is packed in a pouch and should be applied directly after the pouch has been opened. The patch should not be cut into pieces.

Usual Adult Dose for Nausea/Vomiting--Radiation Induced:

2 mg orally given within 1 hour of radiotherapy.

Usual Adult Dose for Nausea/Vomiting -- Postoperative:

Prevention and Treatment
IV: 1 mg undiluted over 30 seconds, given before induction of anesthesia, or immediately before reversal of anesthesia; or give after surgery.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Nausea/Vomiting -- Chemotherapy Induced:

Greater than or equal to 2 to 16 years: 10 mcg/kg IV 30 minutes before start of chemotherapy.

Study (n=80)
Randomized double-blind clinical studies have used granisetron injection in the range of 10 to 40 mcg/kg.

What other drugs will affect granisetron transdermal?

Using granisetron while you are using certain other medicines can cause high levels of serotonin to build up in your body, a condition called "serotonin syndrome," which can be fatal. Tell your doctor if you also use:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with granisetron, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide. Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with granisetron.

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.

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