Temodar (generically known as Temozolomide) is a prescription medication indicated to treat certain types of brain cancer in adults. It can be indicated to treat glioblastoma multiforme and anaplastic astrocytoma, as well as other types of gliomas.
Temozolomide is in a class of medications called alkylating chemotherapy drugs. It works by damaging the DNA in cancer cells, which can slow or stop their growth. It is usually given in combination with radiation therapy and can be administered orally.
Uses and Dosage
Temozolomide is an oral medication that comes in capsules and is taken once a day at bedtime on an empty stomach with a glass of water. Swallow the capsules whole without crushing, chewing, or opening the capsules. If you vomit after taking your dose, do not take any more medication. Wait and take your next dose at the regular time.
Take the medication around the same time every day. The length of treatment depends on how well your body responds to it and the type of cancer that you have. Take temozolomide exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
- For some types of brain tumors, temozolomide is taken daily for 42–49 days. Then, after a 28-day break, it may be taken once a day for 5 days in a row, followed by a 23-day break before repeating the next dosage cycle.
- For treatment of other types of brain tumors, temozolomide is taken once a day for 5 days in a row, followed by a 23-day break before repeating the next dosage cycle. Your doctor will decide how many times you should repeat the treatment cycles.
Common Side Effects of Temodar (Temozolomide):
- Changes in vision
- Hair loss
- Lack of energy
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of balance or coordination
- Memory problems
- Pale skin
- Sores in the mouth and throat
Serious Side Effects of Temodar (Temozolomide):
- Coughing up or vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
- Decreased urination
- Fever, sore throat, ongoing cough, congestion, or other signs of infection
- Pain in the upper right part of the stomach
- Pink, red, or dark brown urine
- Red or black, tarry stools
- Shortness of breath
- Unable to move one side of the body
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Unusual tiredness or weakness
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
Form and Strength
Temodar (Temozolomide) is available in the following forms and strengths:
- 100 mg
- Caution should be exercised when administering Temodar to patients with hepatic or renal impairment.
- The use of Temodar can increase the risk of infection, bleeding, and anemia due to decreased blood cell counts.
- Temodar may cause birth defects if given to a pregnant woman, making effective birth control essential while taking this medication.
- Temodar may cause serious side effects, and patients should be monitored closely by their healthcare provider during treatment, particularly for signs of myelosuppression.
- Patients who have had an allergic reaction to temozolomide or any of the other ingredients in Temodar should not take the medication.
- During treatment with Temodar, patients should avoid activities that require alertness, as the medication may cause dizziness or drowsiness.
- Temodar may cause nausea, vomiting, or other gastrointestinal side effects that can be managed with medication or dietary changes.
- Patients who are pregnant or breastfeeding should not take Temodar, as it may cause harm to the developing fetus or nursing infant.
- Temodar may increase the risk of developing secondary malignancies, such as acute myeloid leukemia or lymphoma.
- Patients with a prior history of seizures or epilepsy may experience an increase in seizure frequency during treatment with Temodar.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How long do you take Temodar?
You might take TEMODAR until your tumor gets worse or for possibly up to 2 years. Your dose is based on your height and weight, and the number of treatment cycles will depend on how you respond to and tolerate this treatment.
How long after Temodar can I eat?
The best time to take temozolomide is before bed. You should avoid eating for 1 hour before and 2 hours after each dose. If you miss a dose, do not take it late or add it to your next dose.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Temodar?
If you miss a dose of Temodar, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice on what to do. It may be necessary to adjust your dosage or treatment schedule.
Is it safe to continue taking Temodar after the initial treatment period?
Your doctor can help you determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Temodar after the initial treatment period. In some cases, long-term treatment with Temodar may be recommended.