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IxempraGeneric Name: Ixabepilone
Ixempra is the trade name for the generic chemotherapy drug Ixabepilone. In some cases, health care professionals may use the trade name Ixempra when referring to the generic drug name Ixabepilone.
Ixempra is an anti-cancer ("antineoplastic" or "cytotoxic") chemotherapy drug. Ixempra is classified as an "antimicrotubule agent" or an "epothilone B analog". For more detail, see How Ixempra Works below.
What IxempraIs Used For:
Ixempra is used in the treatment of metastatic or locally-advanced breast cancer.
Note: If a drug has been approved for one use, physicians may elect to use this same drug for other problems if they believe it may be helpful.
How Ixempra Is Given:
Ixempra Side Effects:
Important things to remember about the side effects of Ixempra:
The following side effects are common (occurring in greater than 30%) for patients taking Ixempra:
These are less common side effects (occurring in about 10-29%) of patients receiving Ixempra:
This list includes common and less common side effects for those taking Ixempra. Ixempra side effects that are very rare -- occurring in less than about 10 percent of patients -- are not listed here. Always inform your health care provider if you experience any unusual symptoms.
When To Contact Your Doctor or Health Care Provider:
Ixempra is given by intravenous infusion and you will be monitored during each infusion. Report to the nurse immediately:
Contact your doctor or health care provider immediately, day or night, if you should experience any of the following symptoms:
The following symptoms require medical attention, but are not an emergency. Contact your doctor or health care provider within 24 hours of noticing any of the following:
Always inform your doctor or health care provider if you experience any unusual symptoms.
Self-Care Tips While Taking Ixempra:
Monitoring and Testing While Taking Ixempra:
You will be checked regularly by your doctor while you are taking Ixempra to monitor side effects and check your response to therapy. Periodic blood work will be obtained to monitor your complete blood count (CBC) as well as the function of other organs (such as your kidneys and liver).
How Ixempra Works
Cancerous tumors are characterized by cell division, which is no longer controlled as it is in normal tissue. "Normal" cells stop dividing when they come into contact with like cells, a mechanism known as contact inhibition. Cancerous cells lose this ability. Cancer cells no longer have the normal checks and balances in place that control and limit cell division. The process of cell division, whether normal or cancerous cells, is through the cell cycle. The cell cycle goes from the resting phase, through active growing phases, and then to mitosis (division).
The ability of chemotherapy to kill cancer cells depends on its ability to halt cell division. Usually, the drugs work by damaging the RNA or DNA that tells the cell how to copy itself in division. If the cells are unable to divide, they die. The faster the cells are dividing, the more likely it is that chemotherapy will kill the cells, causing the tumor to shrink. They also induce cell suicide (self-death or apoptosis).
Chemotherapy drugs that affect cells only when they are dividing are called cell-cycle specific. Chemotherapy drugs that affect cells when they are at rest are called cell-cycle non-specific. The scheduling of chemotherapy is set based on the type of cells, rate at which they divide, and the time at which a given drug is likely to be effective. This is why chemotherapy is typically given in cycles.
Chemotherapy is most effective at killing cells that are rapidly dividing. Unfortunately, chemotherapy does not know the difference between the cancerous cells and the normal cells. The "normal" cells will grow back and be healthy but in the meantime, side effects occur. The "normal" cells most commonly affected by chemotherapy are the blood cells, the cells in the mouth, stomach and bowel, and the hair follicles; resulting in low blood counts, mouth sores, nausea, diarrhea, and/or hair loss. Different drugs may affect different parts of the body.
Chemotherapy (anti-neoplastic drugs) is divided into five classes based on how they work to kill cancer. Although these drugs are divided into groups, there is some overlap among some of the specific drugs.
Ixempra is an antimicrotubule agent. It is cell cycle specific. It acts on the microtubule structure and function of the cell by attaching to a section of the microtubule. This stabilizes the microtubular function, and stops the cell from continuing in its cycle thus causing cell death.
Note: We strongly encourage you to talk with your health care professional about your specific medical condition and treatments. The information contained in this website is meant to be helpful and educational, but is not a substitute for medical advice.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 10 December 2009 05:25|