Targretin - Bexarotene Capsules
What is this medication?
BEXAROTENE (bexs AIR oh teen) treats skin sores caused by lymphoma. It works by slowing down the growth of cancer cells. It belongs to a group of medications called retinoids.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Targretin
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- Frequently drink alcohol
- Gallbladder disease
- High cholesterol
- Liver disease
- Pancreatic disease
- Thyroid disease
- Vision problems
- An unusual or allergic reaction to bexarotene, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
Take this medication by mouth with water. Take it as directed on the prescription label at the same time every day. Take it with food. Keep taking it unless your care team tells you to stop.
Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medication?
Do not take this medication with any of the following:
- Dasabuvir; ombitasvir; paritaprevir; ritonavir
- Live virus vaccines
- Ombitasvir; paritaprevir; ritonavir
This medication may also interact with the following:
- Certain medications for diabetes, such as insulin, glipizide, pioglitazone
- Estrogen and progestin hormones
- Vitamin A and other supplements containing vitamin A
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. It may be some time before you see the benefit from this medication.
You may need blood work while taking this medication.
This medication can increase bad cholesterol and fats (such as LDL, triglycerides) and decrease good cholesterol (HDL) in your blood. You may need blood tests to check your cholesterol. Ask your care team what you can do to lower your risk of high cholesterol while taking this medication.
This medication may cause cataracts, especially with long-term use. You should have regular eye exams while taking this medication. Tell your care team if you have changes in your eyesight.
This medication can make you more sensitive to the sun. Keep out of the sun. If you cannot avoid being in the sun, wear protective clothing and sunscreen. Do not use sun lamps, tanning beds, or tanning booths.
Talk to your care team if you or your partner wish to become pregnant or think either of you might be pregnant. This medication can cause serious birth defects if taken during pregnancy or for 1 month after stopping therapy. Reliable forms of contraception are recommended starting 1 month before, during, and for 1 month after stopping therapy. Estrogen and progestin hormones may not work as well while you are taking this medication. A barrier contraceptive, such as a condom or diaphragm, is recommended. Talk to your care team about other forms of contraception.
A negative pregnancy test is required before starting this medication. Negative pregnancy tests are also required during treatment, even if you are not sexually active.
Do not breastfeed while taking this mediation.
Use a condom during sex and for 1 month after stopping therapy. Tell your care team right away if you think your partner might be pregnant. This medication can cause serious birth defects.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
- Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
- Gallbladder problems—severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever
- Infection—fever, chills, cough, sore throat, wounds that don't heal, pain or trouble when passing urine, general feeling of discomfort or being unwell
- Liver injury—right upper belly pain, loss of appetite, nausea, light-colored stool, dark yellow or brown urine, yellowing skin or eyes, unusual weakness or fatigue
- Low thyroid levels (hypothyroidism)—unusual weakness or fatigue, increased sensitivity to cold, constipation, hair loss, dry skin, weight gain, feelings of depression
- Pancreatitis—severe stomach pain that spreads to your back or gets worse after eating or when touched, fever, nausea, vomiting
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
- Dry skin
- Stomach pain
- Swelling of the ankles, hands, or feet
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store between 2 and 25 degrees C (36 and 77 degrees F). Protect from heat, light, and moisture. Keep the container tightly closed.
Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date. To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:
- Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
- If you cannot return the medication, check the label or package insert to see if the medication should be thrown out in the garbage or flushed down the toilet. If you are not sure, ask your care team. If it is safe to put it in the trash, empty the medication out of the container. Mix the medication with cat litter, dirt, coffee grounds, or other unwanted substance. Seal the mixture in a bag or container. Put it in the trash.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
Additional Information From Chemocare.com About Targretin
- Take this medication at about the same time every day along with a meal that includes some fats.
- Avoid grapefruit juice.
- Drink at least two to three quarts of fluid every 24 hours, unless you are instructed otherwise.
- You may be at risk of infection so try to avoid crowds or people with colds, and report fever or any other signs of infection immediately to your health care provider.
- Wash your hands often
- For flu-like symptoms, keep warm with blankets and drink plenty of liquids. There are medications that can help reduce the discomfort caused by chills.
- To reduce nausea, take anti-nausea medications as prescribed by your doctor, and eat small, frequent meals.
- Avoid sun exposure. Wear SPF 15 (or higher) sunblock and protective clothing.
- In general, drinking alcoholic beverages should be kept to a minimum or avoided completely. You should discuss this with your doctor.
- Get plenty of rest
- Maintain good nutrition
- If you experience symptoms or side effects, be sure to discuss them with your health care team. They can prescribe medications and/or offer other suggestions that are effective in managing such problems.
When to contact your doctor or health care provider:
Contact your health care provider immediately, day or night, if you should experience any of the following symptoms:
- Fever of 100.4° F (38° C or higher) or chills (possible signs of infection)
The following symptoms require medical attention, but are not an emergency. Contact your health care provider within 24 hours of noticing any of the following:
- Headache (moderate to severe)
- Nausea (interferes with ability to eat and unrelieved with prescribed medication).
- Vomiting (vomiting more than 4-5 times in a 24 hour period)
- Diarrhea (4-6 episodes in a 24-hour period)
- Changes is vision
- Swelling in feet or hands
- Extreme weakness or fatigue (interfering with ability to do daily activities).
Always inform your health care provider if you experience any unusual symptoms.