Gefitinib is a drug to treat non-small cell lung cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

Gefitinib is an anticancer drug belonging to the class of anticancer drugs belonging to the protein kinase inhibitor class . This drug works by inhibiting the function of the tyrosine kinase enzyme, so that the growth and spread of cancer cells can be stopped. This medicine should only be used with a doctor's prescription.

Merek dagang gefitinib:  Gefitero, Gefiza, Genessa, Gefinib, Iressa, Iretinib

What is Gefitinib

Group Prescription drug
Category Anticancer drug class of protein kinase inhibitors
Benefit Treating  non-small cell lung cancer  ( NSCLC ) lung cancer
Consumed by Mature
Gefitinib for pregnant and lactating women Category N:  Not yet categorized.

It is not known whether Gefitinib is absorbed into breast milk or not. If you are breastfeeding, do not use this medicine without consulting your doctor first.

Drug form Tablet

Precautions Before Taking Gefitinib

The following are some things you need to pay attention to before taking gefitinib:

  • Tell your doctor about any history of allergies you have. Gefitinib should not be used by patients who are allergic to this drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or planning a pregnancy. Use birth control to prevent pregnancy while on treatment with gefitinib.
  • Tell your doctor if you have or currently have liver disease or hepatitis B , kidney disease , vision problems , stomach ulcers , pulmonary fibrosis , other cancers , diverticulitis , or intestinal obstruction .
  • Tell your doctor if you are taking supplements, certain herbal products, or medications, including anticoagulants, such as warfarin.
  • Tell your doctor if you plan to have certain medical procedures, such as surgery or dental surgery, while taking gefitinib.
  • Immediately consult a doctor if you experience an overdose, drug allergic reaction , or more serious side effects after taking gefitinib.

Dosage and Rules for Use Gefitinib

The doctor will determine the dosage and duration of treatment with gefitinib according to the patient's condition. In general, the dose of gefitinib to treat lung cancer is 250 mg, once a day.

How to Take Gefitinib Properly

Make sure you read the instructions on the drug packaging and follow your doctor 's advice when taking gefitinib. Do not increase or decrease your dose without consulting your doctor first.

Take gefitinib regularly at the same time every day. Gefitinib can be taken before or after meals. Swallow the medicine with the help of water. You can also dissolve gefitinib tablets in water. The trick, stir for 15 minutes until the tablet dissolves, then drink.

If you forget to take gefitinib, consume it immediately if the gap with the next consumption schedule is not too close. If it's close, ignore it and don't double the dose.

If you are currently taking proton pump inhibitors or antacids, wait at least 6–12 hours before taking gefitinib.

Carry out routine controls according to doctor's recommendations while undergoing treatment with gefitinib. Do not stop taking gefinitib without consulting your doctor first.

While undergoing treatment with gefitinib, you may be asked to have your blood pressure checked, complete blood test, or to check blood clotting factor indicators, such as INR.

Store gefitinib in a dry, closed place, and avoid exposure to direct sunlight. Keep this drug out of reach of children.

Gefitinib Interactions with Other Drugs

The following are a number of drug-drug interaction effects that may occur if gefitinib is taken together with other drugs:

  • Decreased effectiveness of gefitinib when used with rifampicin, phenytoin , carbamazepine, or barbiturates
  • Increased gefitinib levels and risk of side effects when used with ketoconazole , clarithromycin, or antiviral drugs
  • Increased risk of bleeding when used with warfarin
  • Increased levels of metoprolol
  • An increased risk of tearing of the digestive tract is used with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ( NSAIDs ) or corticosteroids
  • Decreased levels and effectiveness of gefinitib when used with proton pump inhibitor class drugs or antacids
  • Enhanced neurophile-decreasing (neutropenic) effect of vinorelbine

Gefitinib Side Effects and Dangers

Some of the side effects that may occur after using gefitinib are:

  • Diarrhea
  • Acne
  • Dry skin
  • Sprue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unusual tiredness or severe weakness
  • Hair loss
  • Nausea or vomiting

Check with your doctor if the side effects above don't go away or get worse. Immediately go to the doctor if a drug allergic reaction appears which can be characterized by an itchy rash on the skin, swelling of the eyelids or lips, or difficulty breathing.

In addition, you should also see a doctor immediately if you experience more serious side effects, such as:

  • Hard to breathe
  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Bloody bowel movements or persistent diarrhea
  • Eyes sensitive to light, blurred vision , or red eyes
  • Impaired liver function which can be marked by jaundice , abdominal pain, bloody bowel movements, or dark urine
  • Swelling of the legs and feet
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