Carboplatin treats ovarian cancer. Carboplatin can cause nausea, pain in the hands or feet, and hair loss.
Carboplatin is a prescription medication used to treat cancer of the ovaries that has spread to other parts of the body, not improved, or that has worsened after treatment with other medications or radiation therapy. Carboplatin belongs to a group of drugs known as platinum-containing compounds. These works by interfering with the division of rapidly multiplying cells, particularly cancer cells.
Carboplatin comes as a solution (liquid) to be injected over at least 15 minutes intravenously (into a vein) by a healthcare professional in a medical facility. It is usually given once every 4 weeks.
Common side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite.
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Uses of Carboplatin
Carboplatin is a prescription medication used to treat cancer of the ovaries that has spread to other parts of the body, not improved, or that has worsened after treatment with other medications or radiation therapy.
Carboplatin Brand Names
Carboplatin may be found in some form under the following brand names:
Carboplatin Drug Class
Carboplatin is part of the drug class:
Side Effects of Carboplatin
Common side effects include the following:
- loss of appetite
- hair loss and numbness
- pain in the hands or feet
This is not a complete list of this medication’s side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
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:
- drugs that can decrease kidney function such as
- acetaminophen (Tylenol)
- NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and naproxen
- aminoglycoside medications
- certain antibiotics
- ACEIs such as lisinopril or quinapril
- statins such as rosuvastatin and simvastatin
- water pills (diuretic medications)
- aminoglycoside antibiotics such as amikacin (Amikin), gentamicin (Garamycin), or tobramycin (Tobi, Nebcin)
This is not a complete list of carboplatin drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
The most serious side effects of carboplatin are:
- bleeding and reduced blood cells, including reduced red blood cells (anemia) and platelets (needed for propper blood clotting), which may be severe enough to require blood transfusion. You should tell your doctor right away if you notice any unusual bruising or bleeding, including black tarry stools or blood in the urine.
- infection. Carboplatin can temporarily lower the number of white blood cells in your blood, increasing the risk of infection.
- life-threatening allergic reaction. During and after treatment the doctor or nurse will observe you carefully for signs of allergic reaction.
- kidney and liver problems
- loss of hearing or ringing in the ears
Contact your doctor right away if you experience any of these effects, or notice effects that worry you or are troublesome.
You should avoid contact with adults and children who have infections, and tell your doctor right away if you show signs of infection such as cough, fever, and/or chills. Also, while you are being treated with carboplatin or after you stop treatment, first check with your doctor before getting any immunizations (vaccinations). Avoid contact with adults or children who have received oral polio vaccine since they can pass the polio virus to you.
Do not take this medication if you:
- are allergic to carboplatin or to any of its ingredients
- are allergic to cisplatin or other platinum-containing compounds
- have a weakened blood-forming system (bone marrow depression) or significant bleeding
- are pregnant, intend to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding a baby
Carboplatin Food Interactions
Medications can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of carboplatin, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet.
Be sure to inform your doctor:
- If you are allergic to carboplatin or other platinum containing products;
- If you are or intend to become pregnant, since carboplatin may harm the developing fetus. It is important to use effective birth control while you are being treated with carboplatin.
- If you are breastfeeding, since nursing infants may be exposed to carboplatin in this way
- If you are taking other medicines, including all prescription and non prescription (over-the-counter) drugs, since carboplatin may affect the action of other medicines
- If you have any other medical problems, especially chicken pox (including recent exposure to adults or children with chicken pox), shingles, hearing problems, infection, or kidney disease, since treatment with carboplatin increases the risk and severity of these conditions
Carboplatin 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. It has been shown that use of carboplatin in pregnant women caused some babies to be born with problems. However, in some serious situations, the benefit of using this medication may be greater than the risk of harm to the baby.
Carboplatin and Lactation
Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.
It is not known if carboplatin crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using carboplatin.
Only a professional experienced in the use of cancer drugs should give you this medication. Carboplatin is given by dripping the medicine slowly and directly into a vein (intravenous infusion) for 15 minutes or longer. Your doctor will determine the dose of carboplatin for you based on your weight, height, and kidney function. Carboplatin may be given alone or with other drugs. Treatment is usually repeated every 4 weeks for a number of cycles.
Before and after carboplatin treatment, your doctor may give you medication to lessen the nausea and vomiting associated with this cancer treatment.
- 360 mg/m2 IV (into the vein) on day 1 every 4 weeks.
Combination therapy with cyclophosphamide:
- In the chemotherapy of advanced ovarian cancer, an effective combination for previously untreated patients is carboplatin 300 mg/m2 IV on day 1 every four weeks for six cycles.
Another approach for determining the starting dose of carboplatin is based on your kidney function.
Since this medication 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.
Carboplatin FDA Warning
Carboplatin Injection should be administered under the supervision of a qualified physician experienced in the use of cancer chemotherapeutic agents. Appropriate management of therapy and complications is possible only when adequate treatment facilities are readily available.
Bone marrow suppression is dose related and may be severe, resulting in infection and/or bleeding. Anemia may be cumulative and may require transfusion support. Vomiting is another frequent drug-related side effect.
Anaphylactic-like reactions to Carboplatin Injection have been reported and may occur within minutes of Carboplatin Injection administration. Epinephrine, corticosteroids, and antihistamines have been employed to alleviate symptoms.