Warning: This drug has been
known to cause liver disease in patients. Although rare, you should
notify your doctor immediately if you experience any symptoms that indicate a liver problem such as darker urine,
excessive fatigue, abdominal pain, or yellowing in the eyes/skin.
Indications: Used to treat patients with lung cancer, Iressa, or
Gefitinb, blocks the effects of a protein called tyrosine kinase.
On the outside of a cell there are receptors that are called epidermal growth factors, or EGFs, for
short. Proteins that are produced by the body are attracted to the
EGFRs. An enzyme inside the cell, known as tyrosine kinase, reacts
to the protein attachment, creating a chemical reaction that leads to the cell’s growth and
multiplication. The drug works in that it, too, attaches itself to
the EGFR, blocking tyrosine kinase’s actions from it. The result is
that the cell stops growing altogether or the growth is significantly slowed down.
is used in the treatment of locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer in people who have already
been unsuccessfully treated with certain other chemotherapy medications.
Patients on this drug can experience a number of adverse
reactions such as rash, loss of appetite, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, red/sore mouth/throat, loss of hair, and
weakness. While these symptoms are normal effects of the medicine,
any symptoms that seem excessive or problematic should be brought to the attention of the physician as they can
lead to severe dehydration. The physician may be able to prescribe
an additional prescription to combat some of the more severe side effects. While not common, patients on this drug also report abnormal bleeding, blood
in the stools or urine or when they cough, eyes that burn or itch, and swelling in feet or
ankles. If this should occur, it is important to notify the
Iressa is available in the form of a brown, round, biconvex and film-coated tablet.
Iressa is administered in a 250mg tablet form that is taken orally once each day. It may be taken with or without food and if you have a sensitive stomach make
sure to talk to your doctor or pharmacist about it.
at room temperature (15-25 ° C), away from heat, light and moisture. Keep your medications out of the reach of children
and all drugs should not be used beyond the expiration date printed on the container.
medications, even when
taken at normal dose, tend to damage the bone marrow, and cause serious decrease in the number of blood cells in
your body. Iressa overdose may be dangerous, mainly in fragile
patients, or if taken for long term. Contact your doctor or the poison control center nearest you if you
experience the following symptoms:
- heart problems
- shortness of
- Signs of infection
such as fever, sore throat, chills, and cough.
Iressa as indicated your doctor or pharmacist.
In case you forget to take a dose, take the missed
one as soon as you remember it. If, however, it is almost time for your next dose,
do not double it to recover the missed one; it can be dangerous. Contact your doctor or wait to go back to your
regular schedule. This applies not only to Iressa
but also any other drug.
Pregnant and nursing women should not take Iressa. If you are trying to become pregnant you should talk with your doctor before
using this drug. Allergies should be brought to the attention of
your doctor. Prior health issues involving kidney disease, smoking,
stomach or intestinal ulcers, lung disease, eye issues, and cancer that has spread to the bowels should also be
made known to your doctor.
Mechanism of action (MOA):
Iressa is an epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)
tyrosine kinase inhibitor; i
t reduces tumor proliferation by inhibiting tyrosine kinases, enzymes highly involved in intracellular transmission
of signals inducing cell proliferation.
This drug is known to be affected by certain kinds of drugs so you
want to make sure that your doctor is aware of all drugs or treatments that you are using. This should include medicated creams, herbs, herbal treatments, and medicine
that you can buy on the open shelf. Blood thinners mixed with
Iressa can lead to increased bleeding risks. Drugs such as Dilantin
or Rifampin are known to destroy the drug so your doctor may need to adjust the dose if you are taking
Side effects: Iressa not only attack cancer cells but
(healthy) cells, which often leads to, in certain patients, the following side effects:
mild nausea and vomiting
doctor immediately if you experience any of these symptoms:
- abdominal pain
symptoms such as muscle cramps, decreased blood pressure,
dizziness, fainting, etc.
itchy or red eye
ulcer on the surface of the eye
fast or irregular heart beat
shortness of breath
lips or Skin reactions: ulcers, blisters, pain, redness, scaling, etc.