Cabazitaxel

Cabazitaxel treats prostate cancer. Avoid drinking grapefruit juice while taking cabazitaxel. Your doctor may prescribe medications to prevent or treat vomiting and diarrhea as well as prednisone.

Cabazitaxel Overview

Reviewed: June 20, 2012
Updated: 

Cabazitaxel is a prescription medication used to treat prostate cancer in adults. Cabazitaxel belongs to a group of drugs called microtubule inhibitors, which slow and stop the growth of cancer cells.

This medication comes in an injectable form to be given directly into the vein (IV) by a healthcare provider once every 3 weeks.

Common side effects of cabazitaxel include low red blood cell count, low blood platelet count, and tiredness. Do not drink grapefruit juice while taking cabazitaxel.

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Uses of Cabazitaxel

Cabazitaxel is used to treat people with prostate cancer that has worsened after treatment with other anti-cancer medicines, including docetaxel. Cabazitaxel is designed to be used with a steroid medication called prednisone.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

 

Cabazitaxel Brand Names

Cabazitaxel may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Cabazitaxel Drug Class

Cabazitaxel is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Cabazitaxel

Common side effects of cabazitaxel include:

  • low red blood cell count (anemia). Your doctor will regularly check your red blood cell count. Symptoms of anemia include shortness of breath and tiredness.
  • low blood platelet count. Tell your doctor if you have any unusual bruising or bleeding.
  • tiredness
  • nausea
  • constipation
  • weakness
  • blood in the urine. Tell your doctor or nurse if you see blood in your urine.
  • back pain
  • decreased appetite
  • fever
  • shortness of breath
  • stomach (abdominal) pain
  • change in your sense of taste
  • cough
  • joint pain
  • hair loss
  • numbness, tingling, burning or decreased sensation in your hands or feet

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

These are not all the possible side effects of cabazitaxel. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

 

Cabazitaxel Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • ketoconazole
  • itraconazole
  • clarithromycin
  • atazanavir
  • indinavir
  • nefazodone
  • nelfinavir
  • ritonavir
  • saquinavir
  • telithromycin
  • voriconazole
  • phenytoin
  • carbamazepine
  • rifampin
  • rifabutin
  • rifapentin
  • phenobarbital

This is not a complete list of cabazitaxel drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Cabazitaxel Precautions

Cabazitaxel may cause serious side effects including:

  • Low white blood cells. Low white blood cells can cause you to get serious infections, and may lead to death. People who are 65 years or older may be more likely to have these problems.
    • Your doctor:
      • will do blood tests regularly to check your white blood cell counts during your treatment with cabazitaxel.
      • may lower your dose of cabazitaxel, change how often you receive it, or stop cabazitaxel until your doctor decides that you have enough white blood cells.
      • may prescribe a medicine for you called G-CSF, to help prevent complications if your white blood cell count is too low.
    • Tell your doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms of infection while receiving cabazitaxel:
  • fever. Take your temperature often during treatment with cabazitaxel.
  • cough
  • burning on urination
  • muscle aches
  • Also, tell your doctor if you have any diarrhea during the time that your white blood cell count is low. Your doctor may prescribe treatment for you as needed.
  • Severe allergic reactions: Severe allergic reactions can happen within a few minutes after your infusion of cabazitaxel starts, especially during the first and second infusions. Your doctor should prescribe medicines before each infusion to help prevent severe allergic reactions.
    • Tell your doctor or nurse right away if you have any of these symptoms of a severe allergic reaction during or soon after an infusion of cabazitaxel:
      • rash or itching
      • skin redness
      • feeling dizzy or faint
      • breathing problems
      • chest or throat tightness
      • swelling of face
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms: Vomiting and diarrhea can happen when you take cabazitaxel. Severe vomiting and diarrhea with cabazitaxel can lead to loss of too much body fluid (dehydration), or too much of your body salts (electrolytes). Death has happened from having severe diarrhea and losing too much body fluid or body salts with cabazitaxel. Tell your doctor if you have vomiting or diarrhea. Your doctor will prescribe medicines to prevent or treat vomiting and diarrhea, as needed with cabazitaxel. Tell your doctor if your symptoms get worse or do not get better. You may need to go to the hospital for treatment.
  • Kidney failure: Kidney failure may happen with cabazitaxel, because of severe infection, loss of too much body fluid (dehydration), and other reasons, which may lead to death. Your doctor will check you for this problem and treat you if needed. Tell your doctor if you develop:
    • swelling of your face or body
    • decrease in the amount of urine that your body makes each day.

Do not receive cabazitaxel if:

  • your white blood cell (neutrophil count) is too low
  • you have had a severe allergic reaction to cabazitaxel or other medicines that contain polysorbate 80. Ask your doctor if you are not sure.

Cabazitaxel Food Interactions

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with cabazitaxel and lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

Inform MD

Before receiving cabazitaxel, tell your doctor if you:

  • had allergic reactions in the past
  • have kidney or liver problems
  • are over the age of 65
  • have any other medical conditions
  • if you are a female and:
    • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Cabazitaxel can harm your unborn baby. Talk to your doctor about the best way for you to prevent pregnancy while you are receiving cabazitaxel.
    • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if cabazitaxel passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will take cabazitaxel or breastfeed. You should not do both.

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Cabazitaxel can interact with many other medicines. Do not take any new medicines without asking your doctor first. Your doctor will tell you if it is safe to take the new medicine with cabazitaxel.

 

Cabazitaxel and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

This medication falls into category D. Cabazitaxel can harm your unborn baby. Talk to your doctor about the best way for you to prevent pregnancy while you are receiving cabazitaxel.

Cabazitaxel and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if cabazitaxel passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will take cabazitaxel or breastfeed. You should not do both.

Cabazitaxel Usage

  • Cabazitaxel will be given to you by an intravenous (IV) infusion into your vein.
  • Your treatment will take about 1 hour.
  • Cabazitaxel is usually given every 3 weeks. Your doctor will decide how often you will receive cabazitaxel .
  • Your doctor will also prescribe another medicine called prednisone, for you to take by mouth every day during treatment with cabazitaxel. Your doctor will tell you how and when to take your prednisone.

It is important that you take prednisone exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you forget to take your prednisone, or do not take it on schedule, make sure to tell your doctor or nurse. Before each infusion of cabazitaxel, you may receive other medicines to prevent or treat side effects.

 

Cabazitaxel Dosage

The cabazitaxel dose your doctor recommends will be based on calculation of your body surface area, using your height and weight. The dose may be adjusted depending on how you respond to this medication. Your doctor will prescribe prednisone for you to take, by mouth, during cabazitaxel treatment. Cabazitaxel is usually given once every three weeks.

Cabazitaxel Overdose

If cabazitaxel is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, it is unlikely that an overdose will occur. However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.

Other Requirements

Keep all medical and laboratory appointments. This medication works best if received on schedule. 

Cabazitaxel FDA Warning

WARNING

Neutropenic deaths have been reported. In order to monitor the occurrence of neutropenia, frequent blood cell counts should be performed on all patients receiving cabazitaxel. This medication should not be given to patients with neutrophil counts of ≤1,500 cells/mm3.

Severe hypersensitivity reactions can occur and may include generalized rash/erythema, hypotension and bronchospasm. Severe hypersensitivity reactions require immediate discontinuation of the cabazitaxel infusion and administration of appropriate therapy. Patients should receive premedication. Vabazitaxel must not be given to patients who have a history of severe hypersensitivity reactions to cabazitaxel or to other drugs formulated with polysorbate 80.